Learning about 'carried' feelings changed my life

mental health Jan 31, 2021

I was 5 minutes late to Shannon's birthday zoom call. Sure, I'd only found out about the call an hour before, and I was still able to wish her a happy birthday and be there for her, but when I ended the call, I felt like someone had thrown me into a brick wall.

I felt the intense urge to cry. I felt worthless. I felt like an invisible, shitty friend. I saw the world go dark in front of my eyes and I felt like something inside of me was seriously broken, that I was an awful person for putting the wrong time into my calendar, that I would never get my shit together and be worthwhile friend for anyone.

This over-the-top response is an example of carried feelings. Cool fact: carried feelings aren't your feelings! They're your caretakers' feelings from when you were a kid, and whatever super dysfunctional fears and insecurities and abusive feelings they held, get imprinted on your psyche. As an adult, they come out in overreaction to things.

Why is this life changing?

Because now, when I have an unreasonable response to something, instead of believing the response I can go, 'Aha! That's a carried feeling!' It's a signal that 1) Feelings aren't facts and I don't have to believe what I feel right now and 2) this is an area of my life that I still need to unpack and heal from.

My carried feeling from the party relates to something personal (haha obviously, otherwise I wouldn't have such an intense response), but it was a great opportunity for me to look into it and question those feelings and affirm myself and move forward. Labeling them for what they are is giving me a lot more trust in myself.

Madison Taskett

Austinite 🌮 experimenting in my job and personal life, always optimizing for disproportional returns. :) This blog is a daily look into my mind. It's raw, honest, and reflective, and I post often.