What does it mean to validate an emotion?

When we feel uncomfortable emotions, our first instinct is usually to push them away. We don’t want to feel these uncomfortable emotions. But when we avoid feeling our emotions, we keep them stuck because, as you’ve probably heard before, what you resist, persists.

In my last article about working through suppressed emotions, I laid out a few steps for dealing with our emotions. The 2nd step was all about validating our emotions but what does that really mean? What does it mean to validate our emotions? This got me thinking.

One of the definitions of ‘validate’ is:

To demonstrate or support the truth or value of.

Demonstrating or supporting the truth and value of our emotions.

So often we deny our feelings, wishing they weren’t there. But to validate our emotions means to demonstrate and support the truth of them. This means accepting and allowing them to be there, to acknowledge their being.

Acknowledging and accepting what is is a core principle in spiritual growth because it is only through acknowleding the truth of something that we can transcend it. We cannot transcend that which we don’t acknowledge and see.

While our emotions can seem and feel uncomfortable, there is a great gift in supporting their truth. And that is where their value comes in.

There is value in having difficult emotions in that we can transcend them and grow from them. Our emotions are in us for a reason, and as long as we deny the truth of them, we can never experience their gifts.

It’s challenging to accept difficult feelings and emotions but slowly and surely, we can support the truth of them, see the value of our emotions, and experience the gifts they bring.

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