When was the last time you had a GOOD cry? Not one of those almost cries that you stuff back down to join all the other almost cries you have had over the long haul. I am talking about a cry you let loose and allow to literally flow until the last drop.

What is stopping you? Is it the fact that you feel the urge at the most inopportune times? The first weeks after my Mom died I would feel the urge to cry on the way to work. I prayed for the strength to make it through the work day promising to continue this cry as soon as I was home and did. Like Deborah from Everyone Loves Raymond you sometimes need to book time to be alone and cry.

Do you see crying as a sign of weakness? In my experience, a woman may seem vulnerable by coming to tears in the first few minutes of handling conflict then look out! Whether she stands firm or leaves the room until she has recovered she will become a stronger, clear thinking woman with the exact words or action necessary to get her thoughts across or needs met. It can even give her the strength necessary to leave an unhealthy relationship, workplace or situation.

I often hear the words, “I’m afraid I won’t stop if I start.” Tears are water so it stands to reason that when you hold them back pressure is built up. Therefore when you haven’t released held back tears for years it can feel scary when it comes out in a huge gush that seems intense and uncontrollable. This is generally a short term experience. What tends to prolong the cry is the learned behaviour of constantly trying to control it by scrunching our eyes up tighter and trying to control it. In my experience, this is what causes us to look all puffy and red nosed after a good cry.

A wonderful exercise in learning to allow your tears with ease is to look in a mirror to truly observe the experience. This is incredibly freeing when done without self-criticism. Remember you are observing the experience, not the person (you) doing it. The more you relax into the moment, the lighter you will feel. The puffiness will be minimal if at all. Whenever I have allowed my tears to flow freely I have actually been told how much better I look just minutes after. All the strain has gone out of my face.

In time you may even be able to recognize the difference between old tears that practically jump out of your eyes, new tears that gently flow down your cheek and what I call God Moment tears. The latter being when you feel an incredible connection to something or someone and the love and/or gratitude you feel is simply overwhelming.
I love God Moments!!!

Crying is just another way of eliminating (emotional) poisons and toxins from your body. It is as natural and important as eliminating our physical debris. Just as being constipated for long periods can cause you to gain weight and become ill so can plugging the natural flow of heartfelt tears. By creating this void you make space for more happiness & joy.

So…Lighten Up!
Have YOU had YOUR Laugh Today!

(From Carolyn's Lighten Up Column in What Women Want Plus More Magazine)

Author's Bio: 

A high school teacher of a customer service subject for many years, Carolyn Shannon of Venting Creatively, had to find ways to cope with stress, and to help her students handle life’s daily trials in more positive ways.

Further development of these techniques for herself and others led to Art from the Heart Adventures workshops in 1997, followed by Carolyn's first book of the same title.

Since then Carolyn has authored 3 more books ... a children's version of Art from the Heart Adventures titled What Really REALLY Bugs Me ... Sometimes, The LIGHTer Side of Venting and “DRAWING” The Law of Attraction into YOUR Life. Carolyn has also created hands-on workshops on the themes of ALL 4 books.

Carolyn’ mission is to encourage self-discovery and empowerment by helping others see that it is never too early or too late to look at their lives from a “different” view.

In September of 2008 Carolyn became the Niagara Region Chapter Leader for People in Connection an Online & Local Networking Group for which she hold Monthly Luncheon Events in St. Catharines (2nd Wed) and Niagara Falls(1st Wed)

In December 2010 Carolyn & Rosemary Evangelista of WWWPlusmore.ca launched Women of Worth Online Magazine which Celebrates The WOW Gal in Every Woman by featuring monthly WOW Gals Stories and Reviews. Every Woman Has a WOW Story. The WOW Gals.com