Feelings can be thought of as emotionally charged energy. When placed in storage by defense mechanisms, the emotional charge builds up as additional feelings are added. At a certain threshold the emotional pressure reaches a critical level.
Two options are then available.
The first is an unregulated release of feelings, which may occur when more feelings are added to the existing overload. In this case, the expression of feelings may be out of proportion to the situation, and you may feel out of control. Moodiness, irritability, depression, impatience, and explosiveness result from this pattern.
The second option is a more gradual implosion of feelings, in the form of somatic symptoms such as indigestion, ulcers, muscular tension, headaches, and other physical ailments. The more successful you are at avoiding feelings, the more likely you are to develop physical symptoms having no apparent cause. This, too, will add to your anxiety.
~ Paul Foxman, Dancing with fear: Overcoming anxiety in a world of stress and uncertainty (Northvale NJ: Jason Aronson, 1996).
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“We are a grade nine class of 14 students, looking to make a change in the world….
“We believe that bottling things up and keeping your secrets, fears, and regrets to yourself and not sharing them with anyone else is harmful.”
~ Intro to “Bottled Up” (2:18)
These kids also have a neat little website: Bottled Up.