Catharsis- what is it and have you experienced it? Catharsis is the process of releasing and thereby providing relief from strong or repressed emotions – according to the Oxford Language dictionary. Sometimes we have emotions that we are not aware of until we are able to release them through actions. The above picture is representative of such. My eldest sister Sylvia passed away recently and I have the responsibility of dealing with her affairs – one of which has been learning out her home so it can be sold.
My brother-in-law Don was a packrat and hoarder big time and so there was a lot of stuff occupying most of the space in their double-wide mobile home. When I first got there the living room shown above was covered with stuff – almost every square foot, except for pathways through to the adjoining rooms. It has taken almost a week, split between two visits, to get it to this cleared state. My niece Mundee and her husband Franky came down yesterday and helped me finish it off – for which I am eternally grateful.\
There is much more to do but this was a great relief. When I first visited I was overwhelmed with the task. Seeing this room cleared eases some of that overwhelmedness and gives me hope that the rest will be able to be cleared in time.
Yesterday in my home Toastmasters club we had a storytelling time. One of the members shared a story from her childhood that was pretty traumatic and which she hadn’t felt comfortable telling very many people. She shared it with us and I thanked her for the trust she had in us to share it. I said it took great courage and the telling I hoped would be a cathartic experience for her.
Taking these two experiences into my mind reminded me not only of other experiences that I have had of catharsis, but also brought to mind a few other things that I need to do to in part go through a catharsis. I have had some technical issues that I have been handling with workarounds when I really need to bite the bullet and ask for help in fixing.
Sometimes we put up with stuff and cause ourselves needless angst because we are afraid of change or at least resistant to the efforts we need or think we need to take to fix problems once and for all. I heard someone say “problems don’t age well” and that is so true. I tend to procrastinate and yet whenever I dive into fixing a problem it usually turns out much easier to fix than I thought, and it feels so good to get it done. So if you have something you are resistant to tackle, just dive in and do it. It will be so satisfying.