Catharsis is the process of releasing and thereby providing relief from strong or repressed emotions. It is the process of purification and purgation of emotions, particularly pity and fear, which brings about spiritual renewal or release from tension. It is an emotional release which is linked to a need to relieve unconscious conflicts.
Suppose a person doesn’t give a proper vent to these conflicts. In that case, the feelings may burst out in the form of anger or remain inside in the form of depression which may ultimately result in some psychological disease and even suicidal tendencies. When we are unable to express our feelings and emotions on different occasions, we get mentally stressed because these unexpressed feelings get stored in our subconscious mind.
Catharsis can take place in different ways in a different type of people. Everybody expresses their feelings and inner thoughts in their own ways. Some write poetry and some prose to express their feelings. Painting and sculpting are other ways to express our feelings. Some express their feelings through anger and some prefer silence. We often see some people talking to themselves or sometimes tears come out of their eyes unconsciously. Some people like loneliness and prefer to stay alone. They hate congestions and noisy places. Sometimes these inner conflicts may result in hating ourselves.
These are the different ways of catharsis and it depends upon an individual how they may express their inner feelings and relieve themselves from stress and tension.
It is ironical that most people don’t know how to express their inner conflicts and relieve stress. When a person can alleviate their inner stress through catharsis, it feels like their heavy heart slowly lightens. They feel the stress fading away and inner happiness. Hope gets renewed. They start to love life and their surroundings, enjoy the beauty of nature and live life with a living heart.
We need to take care of our mental health because it directly affects our physical health. Catharsis is essential for mental health. We should learn to live life fully and enjoy the moments of happiness wholeheartedly.
Whenever we feel grief or sorrow, we should never hide it inside us. Instead, we should express it and share it with our nearest. Whenever we feel bad or get hurt by the actions or words of others, we should complain positively rather than storing those hurt sentiments inside us. Whenever we need any help, we should openly request for it and whenever somebody helps us, we should thank them.
If we find goodness in a person, we should openly praise them. Whomever we like to talk to we should interact with. We should prefer the profession we love rather than forcefully involving ourselves in work we are not interested in. Positive thinking is necessary to live a stress-free, happy life. We should never indulge ourselves in negative thoughts.
When we bury our positive and negative feelings and carry them inside our subconscious mind, it results in mental stress and uneasiness in life. When we live with unsaid sorrows, complaints, hate, love, littleness, affection, faults and many other likely things from time immemorial inside our mind, these things become a burden on us and snatch our happiness and comfort. We need to give time to ourselves to get clean from this burden and come out of depression. Some ways catharsis can take place and how we can live a happy life include:
If a person feels any difficulty in performing all the activities mentioned above, they need psychological counselling. They should consult a psychiatrist and express their feelings buried inside to regain mental health and live life to their capabilities.
Our mental stress doesn’t affect only us but indirectly affects the people related to us in our life affairs. And in the long run, affects the whole society and a society with mentally depressed people can seldom progress.
The author is a columnist and teaches Geography at GDC, Kulgam. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org