Are You Over-Spiritualizing? How to Honor Your Feelings

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Note: I updated this post in 2019 for clarity and additional resources.

I often witness people over-spiritualize their issues without dealing with them in an honest way.

Sometimes we rely on affirmations to feel better without getting to the root cause of our discomfort. Other times we talk a big game about forgiveness but, deep down, don’t have a genuine desire to let go and forgive.

If this resonates with you, there’s no shame in it. I’ve over-spiritualized many times. What matters is that we witness that we’re over-spiritualizing and take steps to honor our feelings instead.

What is over-spiritualizing?

Many people are carrying a lot of pain, discomfort and negative experiences. Many people resent family members, friends, coworkers and people from their past. They feel this pain every day but don’t know how to deal with it.

When we don’t know how to deal with our pain, those of us on a spiritual can path can use our spiritual practice to almost overstep the healing process.

Tweet: When you honor your feelings and let yourself move through them, you amplify your ability to attract what you want. @gabbybernstein #Super Attractor

We repeat affirmations but don’t fully believe them, and we aren’t doing the spiritual work that goes along with those affirmations. We may be walking around saying things like, “I forgive, I love, I release.” We post those quotes on Instagram but that’s it. We’re using affirmations in place of doing the actual work of feeling the experience. This is over-spiritualizing.

I did this for many years. I understand it. We don’t actually want to go to the depths and the darkness of the discomfort. That’s what we have to do in order to actually move through the pain. If we simply go through the motions of our spiritual practice, we’re skipping an important step: getting honest about our feelings and honoring them.

How to honor your feelings

If you’re over-spiritualizing instead of really dealing with your issues, I have three concrete tools for you. Keep reading for my guidance on how to honor your feelings.

1. Move through your feelings with Emotional Freedom Technique (EFT)

EFT stands for Emotional Freedom Technique. It’s also known as tapping. This is a practice that allows you to get honest about how you feel and what’s coming up for you. It gives you fast relief so that you can say the things that you’re scared to say and immediately feel better about them.

Here’s a beautiful EFT video from Brad Yates about honoring your feelings:

2. Practice Kundalini yoga

When you do Kundalini yoga, you allow your emotions to move through you naturally so that you can shake them out and have a cathartic experience. That experience of catharsis can be our greatest tool for moving through discomfort, pain and deep patterns of negativity.

Here are some of my Kundalini videos to help you:

3. Speak your truth

I can transform my feelings by being present with them | Spirit Junkie AppOne of the greatest tools for starting a practice of feeling your feelings and moving through them is just to speak the truth.

One thing I’ve talked about is how I handle negative comments on the internet. My philosophy has always been “forgive and delete,” but sometimes a post will really get to me. In those situations, great healing occurs not because I breeze past my feelings and say, “I forgive and delete, and I’m moving on.”

That healing occurs because I say, “I’m hurt. This is uncomfortable.”

I let myself have that feeling. I let that emotion come forward and then I expressed it. And then, once I’ve felt it and honored it, I forgive and delete. Or, if it’s not something I can delete, I forgive and then I ask how I can help someone else. (This is a beautiful lesson I share in my new book, Super Attractor.)

Have you ever had a moment where you expressed your truth to someone and everything changed? That’s often when people fall in love with you more! I’ve had that experience countless times in my life. I’ve just told someone, “This is how I feel,” and our relationship has changed forever. It’s become stronger, deeper and more real. Vulnerability heals. Truth, spoken with kindness, heals.

When you say how you feel and share your truth, you also give others permission to do the same. You become the teacher.

Go deeper with my Manifesting Jumpstart Workshop

Manifesting Jumpstart Workshop - Livestream - Free ticket when you order Super Attractor by Gabby Bernstein

The first important step in attracting what you want to is to honor your feelings. Our feelings send out an energetic message, and the Universe responds by delivering us people and experiences that match our vibration. That’s how we co-create our reality.

So if you’ve been struggling to manifest what you want, back up. Honor your feelings and clean up those energetic requests! This is a process I guide you through in my 2-hour Manifesting Jumpstart Workshop, which is FREE when you preorder my new book, Super Attractor.

In this online workshop, I address exactly what’s blocking you from feeling good and how to fix it. I’ve been applying this method daily as I recover from postpartum anxiety and other feelings. It’s a beautiful practice.

Gabby Bernstein happy in the woods in springtime | Honor your feelingsYou’ll learn how to stop controlling and start allowing. This is a major one for me. I spent years practicing spiritual methods for releasing control. For most of my life, I relied on the control in order to feel safe. The method I teach in the workshop is one that I apply in my own life to undo the fear and need to control.

I also share a practice that I rely on daily: the practice of accepting that good thing can come easily. We all suffer from the belief that we have to struggle to feel good, succeed and attract what we want. In order to heal this belief, we must learn how to accept that when we relax and allow, good things come easily.

Again, these are all practices I apply in my own life on a daily basis. Fear, past trauma, rage and anxiety block us from feeling good and attracting what we want. This workshop will help you undo these patterns so you can be free!

Click here to order Super Attractor and claim your free bonus workshop!

Honor the process and let it unfold

Don’t be afraid to say how you feel, because when you let yourself be authentic you experience dramatic growth. Use your tools, such as EFT and Kundalini, to honor your feelings and move through them. Even if you can’t do it in the moment, do it later in the day when you have the time. Let it be a process. Let it unfold.

In that process you can always bring your affirmations and prayers back in. But first, let yourself feel. Before you post that mantra on Instagram or repeat that affirmation all day long, give yourself a chance to get honest and honor your feelings.

I hope this serves you and helps you honor your feelings. If you feel moved to do so, post in the comments below about what it is that you want to work through. Share how you feel. When you express that feeling, you can start to receive a lot of relief in that instant.

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  1. I feel like I want my ex back even though he broke up with me. Even though he started going out with other women while I stilled lived with him after the break up. Even though everyone around me tells me he doesn’t care about me. Even though I’m a strong empowered woman.

  2. I’m gonna lay it on the line and be very real and vulnerable. I’ve worked through so much crap and baggage over the past 7 years; I used to have panic attacks regularly, but worked through the process; was on medication for that, and through much root digging (inside) and gentle, wonderful counseling, was able to move past it and wean off the meds. I regularly use tapping for a regulator. I’m currently in your SJMC, and I’m growing, growing, growing. I’ve forgiven much and received even more freedom and light inside because of that. I own two businesses and have started a third, along with being a high school art teacher. Just recently, (3 weeks)this intensely strong anxiety has risen up in me, and I have no clue where it’s coming from. I’ve journaled, asked my higher self and Spirit to show me the root cause; I’ve meditated more, etc etc but it seems to be getting worse instead of better. I’m at a loss, and frankly (lol) it pisses me off that its back! I’ve noticed the anxiety is worse when I’m in my classroom, and students start back this week. Any advice? I just keep asking and journaling…the root has to surface soon. Sat Nam.

  3. I have found journaling to help me work through my emotions. Also analyzing my root to why I feel the way I do. Where the root block came from and work through it to let it go. I sometimes think of myself as a 3rd person and look deep within myself and my higher self and ask what advice would I give someone else if this was happening to them. For the longest time I would always give great advice to all my friends but never took the very same advice in to my own life. Sometimes you have to go back in time and talk to that little girl crying in the corner and tell her she is loved and she is beautiful and that she is bound for greatness. Give her the light in which she only saw darkness.

  4. I have been on this change since 2015 and its constant, like a roller coaster that never stops.
    I am forever working through my past and also my present it seems that I get to a point then the ego gets in the way and I feel I am back at the beginning again. Does that often happen to others as well? You inspire me and thanks for your wisdom and allowing me to looking at things in a different perspective.

    1. The ego loves to drag us back into our old patterns and stories. If you can, I recommend reading a book of mine and committing to that 40-day practice. May Cause Miracles will help you add up subtle shifts in every area of your life so you’re not overwhelmed, but see clear progress. It helps you consistently choose the voice of love over the voice of the ego.

      If you do not already have a prayer and meditation practice, I strongly recommend establishing one today. You can meditate for as little as 1 minute a day and build up to 10 minutes, 20 minutes or more each day. Check out my beginner’s guide to meditation.

      So much of being on a spiritual path involves consistency. When you have consistency with your practice, you can ground yourself and get off that roller coaster. (Also check out this blog/vlog on how to reclaim your power.)

      Sending you love + light.

  5. After a bad breakup a few years back, I have bounce back pretty quickly. I have cried my life for a few hours and the pain was unbearable…It was so bad, it hurt so much physically that I had to put a stop. So I just decide to stop. I have deal with this better then I tough because at 27 years old, it was my first heartbreak. I have found out that, I can live by myself. And for so long I was sure that this was the challenge life had for me. To learn that I’m capable of going on with my life, without anyone else. That I was enough. The thing is, that man, who broke my heart. I have take him back. It”s been now more the 5 years and we have a beautiful baby girl and a healthy relationship. And I still struggle to accept what had happen. Now I know that I have to feel the pain and learn from it. I meditate and pray.. I hope to find peace. Just telling it is so much of a release, because I never told anybody.

    1. Telling it is a prayer and the relief you feel is a miracle. I can understand some of what you’ve felt because my own romantic journey involved separating and reuniting in a romantic relationship (I write about it in Spirit Junkie). These blogs can help you heal those old wounds and change your story to move forward on a beautiful path:

      How to Forgive Someone
      Accepting People Where They Are
      Showing Up for Your Spiritual Assignments
      How to Let Go of the Story You Tell Yourself
      How to Tell the Truth

      If you want a deep dive into this topic, you can check out my digital course called Fearless Relationships. xoxox

  6. Hi! Gabby, I am just now discovering you and literally tearing up with gratitude. I have been on my spiritual journey now for several years and now, and I too am a recovering alcoholic. The reason I am writing today is because I KNOW I am supposed to help people, God has placed that in my heart and I have started down that path. I am enjoying the journey, but having a little trouble with the direction? I am trying to focus on the next right thing and I know this will not happen overnight, but I feel I need more guidance? I guess this is new to me, I have always lived inside the box and done what I was expected to do, and for the first time I surrendering on a daily basis to the Universe’s plan. It is just coming through a little fuzzy for me, I need specifics? How do I stand out from the crowd, what makes me unique (other than the fact that I am me), what the hell am I really trying to accomplish here? HELP…PLESSE!!! Thank you!!! Thats the truth I needed to get out there, so I can face it head on!!!!! How to tell if an idea is coming from me and my ego forcing something OR is this divinely inspired!!! THANKS AGAIN and You ROCK!!

  7. From a coach I just learnt that I sense other peoples feelings without them expressing them to me, even from total strangers. I was freaked out. I know this happens when I observe my husband – I can tell how he feels and then I feed off his emotions. So I was stranded with the questions: what about my own feelings? I think part of the response is that I care more for others well being then I care for my own. I feel disconnected from my heart. I know that when I had to put my dog down, that was my own, deep sad emotion that I accepted in crying my heart out. I think part of the other response lies in meditation. I recently joined a 1 hour meditation (alone, normally I can handle 10 min) group. After quite a lot of mental thought fights, I suddenly was in a place where I almost could hear a voice talking to me and there was a message. Tears rolled down my cheeks and silly me, I immediately hoped that nobody is seeing me – of course nobody did. I know meditation will help me to connect to my own feeling, to re-connect to myself and find so many answers I am looking for. Just got to try and include meditation to a daily routine. Love your videos Gabby and just bought the book “you are your own GURU” for my holidays.

  8. Thank you for this video – I think it comes to me at the right time. I have been in various forms of therapy for nearly 18 years and only in the last three years have recognised that the deep rooted problem is co-dependence. Since recognising this, I have then been on a path and seeking the right way for me to understand and move on from this emotionally (and often physically) crippling and debilitating issue. I have tried everything from the Survivors course at The Meadows to the Hoffman process as well as seeking out and trying almost every different type of therapy in order to seek the ‘solution’. Whilst I have learnt much along the way and my awareness is high – I was unable to find a system that truly sang to me… and then I found your books and all. Finally I feel I have found a path that sits well with my soul. The resonates with my heart. That, despite it conflicting with many of my ‘cynicisms’ – I know is right for me. HOWEVER, finding my own practice within this is proving a challenge. I am currently trying to find what is the right practice for me, I am asking for guidance (too much I think) and praying a lot. Gratitude comes highly on my list and helping others when i feel helpless too. I am trying it all without yet knowing what actually works for me, and my fear is that I’m not actually trying any of them well enough or deep enough. I have spent a lot of time sitting in my feelings beforehand, and yet the habits and pains from co-dependence still raise their ego heads on a regular basis. Recently, I have just surrendered. Fallen to my knees and prayed for guidance. But I feel like i am taking a shortcut and being lazy. So then i try to forgive myself! Oy! I think my intention and desire to change is enormous – but I’m not sure if my practice (or inconstant version of the same thing) is helpful or unhelpful. I also think there may be a degree of self sabotage getting in the way of me finding and implementing a routine to this. Maybe the changing nature of it all is ok. I’m just not sure. What I do know is this is the right spiritual path for me (look how long its taken me to find it and embrace it?!) and now i really truly wish to step up to the plate. One quick last note is that i do have an old belief system that something needs to be painful and hard for it to work – is this true? It doesn’t sit right with my thoughts about this. Thank you. Not even sure i am looking for answers but it does feel good to share this. With love. X

    1. Thanks so much for sharing this. The path does not have to be painful and hard in order to work, but we all will have painful experiences. If you have my book, The Universe Has Your Back, go back and read the chapter on Surrender. The key for you, I feel, and for so many of us- is to be gentle with yourself throughout the process. Ego backlash is unavoidable and is only lessened by your willingness to choose again for Love instead of fear. You’re not going to be perfect at it, but you can be more loving- especially with yourself. Remember that it’s a process and you cannot get it wrong. You can always choose again.
      big love to you!
      g xo

  9. Verry Happy! I want to share my review on Dr Mutuma how I got my husband back and testify to the world. I got married to my husband about 4 years ago we start having problems at home like we stop sleeping on the same bed,arguing about little things he always come home late at night and sleeping with other women. I have never loved any man in my life except him. He is the father of my child and i don’t want to loose him because we have worked so hard together to become what we are today. Few months ago he now decided to leave me and the kid,being a single mother can be hard sometimes and so i have nobody to turn to and i was heart broken. I called my mom and explain everything to her,my mother told me about Dr Mutuma how he helped her solve the problem between her and my dad, i was surprise about it because they separated from each other for three and a half years and it was like a miracle how they came back together and love each other. I was directed to Dr Mutuma on his email: drmutumahouseofsolution121@gmail .com and explained everything to him,so he told me not to worry that he will cast a spell and make things come back to how we were, so much in love again and said my husband was under manipulation by a female controlling my husband. He said my
    problem will be solved within two days if i believe i said OKAY. So he cast a spell for me and after two days my lover came back on his kneels crying and begging me to forgive him. Am so happy now. Contact Dr Mutuma (drmutumahouseofsolution121@gmail. com) for any kind of relationship/marriage problem.

  10. i feel so angry and so resentful. I feel frustrated and trapped in a life that I can’t escape. I feel that i have been denied what i want my whole life and there is no way to get it and I will never be able to achieve the freedom I want. I am scared that I will always have to be responsible for everything and I will never find someone to help me in life. And I feel shameful about wanting that. I am constantly judging myself, saying that it is wrong to want to do what I want or live the life I want. And this makes it worse. I am tired of working so hard on acceptance but still not figuring out the way. I feel like such a failure in life. This seems like such a simple thing, and I’m supposedly so smart, but dealing with my own feelings is so hard. I teach people every day how to manage their stories and move through the pain and patterns, but my inner critic is so loud, I can’t manage it for myself. I want to let go, and I want to trust that I will be ok if I do.

  11. I miss my brother. I’m heartbroken. My girls are five and three and he don’t even know them neither he knows me. He doesn’t want to speak to me for more than fifteen years now, more than half of my entire life. I wish he wasn’t that stubborn.

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