Is a feeling of having a fiery ball inside your stomach that spreads tension all over your body well-known to you? Or is a feeling of chest pressure accompanied by strong heart palpitations even more familiar? Some of you might have experienced rage that lasted for days, and which rage you cannot control, but it only spills over and leaves you helpless. All those experiences are possible signs that a dragon in you has awakened.
What are our inner dragons?
Those are intense emotions that overwhelm us, and we have a feeling that we cannot control them, but that they are taking authority over our reactions and deeds. Dragons emerge through difficult and traumatic events, during which we experienced feelings of being terrified, feelings of helplessness, horror, extreme sorrow, fear for our lives or a life of a loved one. If at that time we did not have space to live through these emotions, if we did not receive support of the people that surround us, or we could not understand what was happening to us, it is highly probable that the intense feelings remained trapped and that we have developed mechanisms to keep it that way. In other words, a dragon has hatched and we are doing everything in our power to keep it from coming out.
As time passes, with each new situation that reminds us of the one in which it was created, the dragon grows and we need more and more energy to restrain it. This is very exhausting and it can make everyday functioning more difficult, interfere with relationships with the loved ones, make us unhappy, and when the defenses subside, the dragon comes out. We are then experiencing intense emotions and physical sensations described at the beginning of this text, which can be a frightening experience. Most commonly, that intense part does not last long, however it does leave a mark and strengthens the dragon.
How to deal with your dragons?
Often, the first urge is to try to kill them, i.e. cancel those experiences and feelings as if they have never existed. The problem with this approach is that we cannot turn back the time and change the past. What happened to us was difficult, and by denying it we are only exhausting ourselves more and creating mental and physical difficulties for ourselves. The goal is to tame the dragon. And just like in a cartoon, for that to be done we need a lot of patience, compassion to ourselves, courage, strength and support of the people that are close to us. There are dragons we manage to make friends with on our own, and there are also those that are big and mighty, and we cannot deal with them on our own. In that case, psychotherapy can be of help to us. You and your dragons and welcome at Apsiha!