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Why You Always Need To Confront Your Emotions, Even When You're Terrified

Living life by the motto “all or nothing” is often what we believe to be the right thing to do.

We think nothing should be mediocre, everything should always be the best it can be and we should absolutely let go of anything that it is not making us 100 percent happy.

On paper, that really does sound like the perfect way to live.

In reality, it's actually far harder than you think it would be.

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Sometimes, we don't want all or nothing; we just want to drift. We want things to stay the same and just accept things for how they are.

It's not that nothing needs to change; it's that we are too afraid for them to.

Just because things aren't incredible doesn't mean they are bad. It's far easier to accept that things are “OK” than to take a risk to make them amazing.

It happens in many parts of our lives, from a job that you can't seem to fit into to moving to a city that wasn't how you pictured it.

It's easier to just put up with them than to make a drastic change for the better.

For me, this was most evident in my relationship.

It was comfortable and something I felt I needed to have. I knew it wasn't what it should be, but it could have been a whole lot worse.

So, what did I do? I ignored how I felt and allowed myself to enjoy the comfort it offered.

A few weeks prior to it coming to an end, I had started to get a sense that things just weren't right. It didn't feel the same.

It became more of an effort that an enjoyment, and ultimately, my feelings had just changed. Sounds like a recipe for a breakup, but it wasn't.

I just ignored my feelings and carried on like normal.

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It's never the right thing to do in a relationship, and in hindsight, I'm aware that it wasn't. But at the time, it was far easier.

I didn't want to confront the way I felt or no longer felt. Being with someone was comforting. It was what I had known for a long time, and I couldn't picture the single life at all.

I wanted something stable in my life, and I refused to take the risk I knew was the best thing for me.

Looking back, I could have gone on like this for a long time. Things probably wouldn't have gotten any better, and they probably wouldn't have become a whole lot worse.

I would have just carried on existing.

Even now after ending the relationship, I can't quite pinpoint the moment when I snapped out of going with the flow.

I guess that one day, I just decided it wasn't good enough. Sure, I wasn't feeling anything really bad, but I wasn't ridiculously in love, either.

I deserved to be stupidly happy, to feel feelings too strong to ignore and to be able to truly say I wasn't settling.

OK, so that might sound like a stupid idea. I'm not naive, and I know love isn't a fairytale.

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It requires hard work and compromise, and it is bound to face some doubts. But if there's one thing I've learned, it's that you can't ignore how you feel.

Naturally, it's easier to pretend as though our feelings always match what we think we want, but they just don't.

When you feel something enough, it won't go away. You can ignore it as much as you like, but there will come a day when you realize you deserve more.

You are entitled to feel however you want to and to act on whatever it is that will make you the happiest you can be.

We have to realize the only way to get rid of unwanted feelings or to feel how we really want to feel is confront our emotions.

Even if it feels like the hardest thing to do.

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Emma Orlando

Contributor

A student of Advertising and a film PR intern living in London.
A student of Advertising and a film PR intern living in London.

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