Saying “I’m fine” when we’re not can be a form of denial and prevent us from fully processing emotions. It gives a false sense that things are under control when they may not be. This can lead to suppressed emotions erupting later. Being aware of when we say “I’m fine” can serve as an important signal that we need to explore feelings more deeply.
Why You May Be Hiding Behind “I’m Fine”
What if you’re NOT actually okay? People often say “I’m fine” or “It’s fine” when acknowledging struggles or difficult emotions. This minimizes vulnerability and authenticity. There are a few common reasons for this:
- To protect ourselves from uncomfortable feelings
- To avoid tapping into emotions that are too painful
- To protect others from feeling responsible or carrying our burdens
- To control how others perceive us and our struggles
Moving from Thinking About Feelings to Feeling Them
Many of us think about our feelings rather than actually feeling them. We analyze them rather than experiencing them in our body. Slowing down and consciously moving from thinking about feelings to actually feeling them is an important part of processing emotions fully. This prevents suppressing emotions while thinking we have already felt something.
Awareness, Acceptance, Agency
Becoming aware of when we say “I’m fine”, accepting the underlying emotions, and then moving to conscious agency/action can be a helpful framework. Starting with awareness and acceptance prevents jumping to action that isn’t grounded in our true emotions.
It’s Okay to Not Be Okay
The journey of healing is challenging. It’s okay to not be okay. Painful emotions don’t define who we are, only the experiences we are having. Give yourself permission to be exactly where you are.
- Notice when you say “I’m fine” as a possible sign of suppressing emotions
- Slow down and move from thinking about feelings to feeling them in your body
- Start with awareness and acceptance before moving to action
- It’s okay to not feel okay; you are not defined by your struggles
- Give yourself permission to authentically feel and process difficult emotions
Listen to Alana and Amie take a deep dive into this topic on the Choose to Be Podcast!