Once you’ve identified the pain, cost and benefit of holding on to negative emotions, you can evaluate and let go of them. For this journaling exercise, consider:
- What negative emotion(s) am I ready to let go of?
- What context does this emotion appear?
Evaluating and Letting Go Exercise:
I have been holding these feelings for (how long) ______________________
Holding on to these feelings have cost me ___________________________
What these feelings have done to me is ________________________________________________________________
My payoff in keeping these feelings has been____________________________________________________________
The possible difference it could make in my life if I could let these feelings go is _________________________________
The fears I have in letting go of these feelings are ________________________________________________________
Is it possible that I could let go of these feelings? _________________________________________________________
Am I willing to let go of these feelings? ___________________________________ When?_______________________
In this moment are they gone? _____________________________________________
If I had the power to replace those feelings with something new I would like to feel______________________________
And I would like to tell myself such things as ____________________________________________________________
Could I let those feelings in? ________________________________________________________________________
Am I willing to let those feelings in? ___________________________________________________________________
In this moment are those feelings present? ____________________________________________________________
The behaviors or actions that I tend to want to show when I feel these new feelings are _________________________
The words that want to come out of my mouth when I feel these feelings are _________________________________
A previous time when I have felt similar feelings was the time when _______________ _________________________
Go to the next journaling exercise: New Possibilities for Thinking and Feeling
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*Journaling exercises written by Cort Curtis, PhD, used with permission.