When Emotional Overwhelm Causes You to Break Down
- 2019 Apr 08
I lost it last night.
Not my cookies. But it might have seemed like it since a lot of junk came out of me. I guess you could call it losing your emotional cookies.
Is that too icky? The truth is like that sometimes. It's just plain messy when we let God work in and through us. When destructive beliefs surface and our fleshly desires to control it all have to
Pain seared deep and my entire ability to manage emotions came undone. One act beget another awful act with none of it producing anything beautiful.
Well, not immediately that is.
Sometimes, things come undone so
When emotions surface raw and real, the immediate outcome may require amends, confessions, and consequences. By facing these and working through this hard process, the outcome of losing it doesn't have to be a downward spiral of shame and defeat. It could produce something more beautiful and freeing than you've known before.
Here's the thing, most people won't admit when they've lost it. They won't tell others that their emotions crumbled and for a time it seemed like the enemy was winning. I don't really want to share the truth of my messes either, but I'm choosing to do so for four reasons.
One, I'm in this journey of emotional health and spiritual growth with you. For life.
Two, I don't think I'm the only one who takes steps forward, then falls back. I don't want readers feeling like they're alone in their battles.
Three, because I think anyone who admits they've failed and
Four, I refuse to let darkness win.
I refuse to pretend I have it all together when the truth is I struggle.
Falling down happens while remaining passionate about helping others cultivate a life well-lived emotionally and spiritually. I get the struggle intimately and as long as God keeps strengthening me, I'll continue to seek growth over stagnancy.
Christian growth requires honestly admitting our need for help rather than deceitfully feigning fine.
We all have steps forward and steps backward. We all need to
Holding back emotions
Not having a safe place to feel and deal with the emotions we have creates internal pressure. Eventually, something explodes. It might
I'm still working on how
For too long I lived afraid of saying no and speaking up for my needs, so much so
I didn't feel safe enough with God to be honest with Him about the hurt and anger I had. Maybe I figured lightning would strike if I railed at Him, but then something about David, Job, and others in scripture stood out
They got honest with God about how they felt.
David carried on about his distress and repeatedly chose hope
Why are you cast down, O my soul,
and why are you in turmoil within me?
Hope in God; for I shall again praise him,
my salvation and my God. ~ Psalm 42:11 ESV
That sounded familiar. I could
When I admitted the anger that was already there, I
There's nothing admirable about what happened last night. It was destructive. I hurt someone I love. No amount of personal pain makes it OK to cause pain to another.
Now I have a choice to make. A choice to do the hard things, like confess and make amends. To own the part that is mine as God brings clarity to a muddy heart and mind.
Maybe you've experienced this too.
You've lost it and things keep spiraling in the wrong direction. It's not too late to see it halted. If you are a
Either way, receive His forgiveness. It's already available and paid in full. It's a done deal.
As I mentioned in the Cultivated Life Community on Facebook,
Whatever happened yesterday doesn't have to define today. Forgive. Confess. Admit. Surrender. Receive His mercy and grace which is new and fresh. He has what we need right as we need it. Even in this
Growing emotionally and spiritually isn't for the faint of heart, and there will be plenty of messes along the way, but living stuck is not what God intended.
I'd rather fall down and get back up as many times as it takes because every time I do, I experience more of Him. My need for Him only intensifies.
Lord, help me.
If you're willing to get up again and do the hard work of confession so you can live free of your past mistakes, you are such a brave and courageous soul.
Even if your knees are knocking and your heart is racing, keep going. Keep seeking Him.
How can I pray for you today? Would you pray for me too?
If you're looking for a way to process difficult emotions and downward thought spirals, consider Unleash: Heart & Soul Care Sheets.
This tool has helped hundreds, including me.
Jolene Underwood is an emotional health warrior and soul care mentor. She provides practical and spiritual support for cultivating life within the Christian soul by drawing upon her personal journey towards emotional health, her psychology background, and a passion for Christian counseling. Jolene writes regularly at JoleneUnderwood.com. She also leads a community of writers called Rise Up Writers. Her tool, Unleash : Heart and Soul Care Sheets, has helped hundreds experience greater freedom. Connect with her online via YouTube/Facebook/Twitter/Instagram/Pinterest at @theJoleneU or via the Cultivated Life Newsletter.