We Need Positive Outlets for Releasing Pent Up Emotions

September 29, 2023

We all need one or more ways of getting things out of our system; whether that’s going for a 10 km run or ranting at the TV when the ref calls a penalty against your team.

Your life as an member of the Armed Forces means that you had to be both mentally and physically fit and active; whether you realised this or not, this was beneficial in helping you to dissipate anger and/or frustration.

When you leave, you will need to find new ways of “releasing”, (particularly if you have any stress or mental health), to avoid your body and mind building up unhealthy thoughts which can, over time, end up with you believing that the world in general and people around you aren’t co-operating.

Leaving the forces itself is an emotional time and can make you experience feelings of sadness, particularly if you don’t have anything to replace the working life you had. A race horse is not meant to be kept in a stable without exercise and doing what it has been trained to do all its life; anyone who has rescued a former race horse knows that they need to be kept active and it will be quite a while to get them to calm down.

Some of us may end up compensating for the gradual build up  of negativity by doing things that are out of character; whether it’s picking fights with our family, spending all day playing video games, eating a whole cake everyday or adding that extra pint or four in the pub, it’s almost as if we are giving a middle finger to the world but in reality all we are doing is hurting ourselves.

It’s almost a form of self-denigration; “I’m not worthy so you’re justified to be cross with me/ for shouting at me/leaving me alone/poking fun at me for putting on weight/etc”.

We have a whole list of defences (most of which will not make any sense to people who know us), allowing us to carry on down this path and until we get called out on it in a way that makes us stop and introspect, then some of us can end up in a very bad place and require medical attention. Sadly for a few, there is no way back.

Have you noticed someone around you who has changed since they left the service? It’s possible that they may not be ready to talk, but is there any way you can get them to re-adjust their day to allow for more ways of unwinding?

Even just inviting them to this site may help them distract themselves in a more positive ways by allowing them to interact with people with whom they feel a connection.

 

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