Insights from the Pavement: Embracing the process of emotional release

All too often we find ourselves denying our bodies and minds the peace and comfort of simply letting go of societal pressures and embracing our true emotions.  It’s apparent that travel seemingly forces us to do this at many turns.  But what about when we’re in our home lives?  Generally we’re expected to be emotionless unless that emotion happens to agree with the mood of the room.

Why is this?  Where did this start?  And why is it that sacrificing our natural inclination toward response and release for the good of the group is seen as the expected notion?


This can come from a variety of sources and for a variety of factors.  The most prominent is, oddly enough, our friends and family.  Those closest to us are the most effective vehicles for transmitting those unspoken messages specifically because they share such a deep and interactive relationship.

Generally speaking – and even without any spoken confirmation – we are expected to keep up a certain level of pretense with those around us.  Even our most intimate of friends may still have a deeply engrained sense of what we “should” act like or how we “ought to” react to given situations.  And this isn’t always the first, natural reaction that our bodies may feel the need to express.

Another source of this can be our profession.  At the workplace, it’s frowned upon to see an employee expressing themselves in a manner that is not ultimately adding to the productivity of their job.  And while this is understandable, it still doesn’t mean that we should deny our natural inclination to get out our feelings as they happen.

It is when we keep our emotions bottled up inside that we have the most trouble and this can lead to anxiety, sleep loss, unhealthy weight loss, bad eating habits and more.  And because of all these related health and personal risks, we miss work, over sleep and come to work late, can’t pay attention during working hours and on and on.  And that’s just on the productivity end.  So is it really the best thing to do to keep these items pent up inside?  How good for productivity is that, in the end?

There are many other instances where our need to express ourselves comes at times when others simply don’t want to hear it.  But we should always remember that when our friends find themselves facing emotionally heightened circumstances, they are sure to remember how we offered them an open and comfortable forum for expressing their emotions when it’s time for us to ask the same of them.

And this is a universal concern that faces every country in the world.  There’s no escaping it.  And because there is also no escaping our need for emotion release, it is wise to take time to find creative ways to express these emotions.

Traveling, itself, can be an amazing release of stress.  But even on the road, there needs to be a continuum of options for getting out our frustrations.  Journaling, meditating, exercising, running – even sleeping – can all be great ways to calm the mind and attain balance.

No matter if we find ourselves on the road or at the office, taking a moment or planning a future moment when the time is right to get that release is of the utmost importance.

Follow me on twitter: @cyleodonnell

Like the photo from this journal?  Click HERE to visit the album from Thailand’s Andaman coast.


2 thoughts on “Insights from the Pavement: Embracing the process of emotional release

  1. You are a great writer. Loved this article. I too believe we need to deal with our emotions and even if we are traveling to get away from those feelings we have to realize we’re gonna have to deal with them at some point in our lives.

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