Crying is an emotion that is often kept behind closed doors and when we are questioned, we often deny that we are upset for fear of judgement. But we should not be afraid to show that we are sad, after all crying is as natural as sleep is to restore the mind. Without tears we would not be able to see, without tears we would be emotionless and without tears our body could not flush out natural toxins. But why is it that when we someone cry we feel uncomfortable or when we feel the first sting of tears seeping through our lashes we are overcome with embarrassment and are too embarrassed to admit that we have been crying. I used to be one of those people and would get angry or upset if someone realized that I had been crying. I believed that it was a sign of weakness and wanted to be seen as a strong character who did not let her emotions get the better of her. But then I realized something, to ‘cry’ is not a passive reaction, thus should not be weak. In fact to bare your soul to others and even to yourself can help them see your vulnerability, which is not necessarily a bad thing. I do not like being pitied at the best of times but at the same time, denying that you are under emotional duress is bad for you. It is important to acknowledge that you are upset, in fact have a little cry and shout about it. Trust me you will feel a whole lot better and it can allow you to alleviate any tension or stress you may be feeling.
7 Reasons Why You Need To Cry
- To see
Tears, believe it or not allow us to ‘see’. Not only do the tears help lubricate our eyes but it also ensure that our eyes, specifically the ‘mucous membranes’ stay hydrated. Without tears the mucous membranes would become dehydrated, resulting in long term sight loss and an inability to see clearly. Not to mention our throats feel scratchy when we are dehydrated so if our tear ducts were blocked it would be painful to see, even more so if you already have sight issues and need glasses or contacts to see.
Tears that help us ‘see’ are known as ‘basal’ tears , because they are natures natural form of lubrication
2. To Feel Better
Put simply tears make us feel better, particularly when we are under great amounts of stress. While you might not thank your tears for giving you a massive migraine and flushed skin, the after effects is undoubtedly worth it. After a good ol’ crying session I feel as though my body has become cleansed and I feel pure and more whole than pre-crying session. Of course I am not saying you should just cry over everything but sometimes little issues like ‘stress’ can manifest and become more damaging to your sense of self and emotional well being.
Not all tears are due to frustration or anger, in some cases when we find something funny or are so ‘happy’, we cry because it stems as an automated response generated from our ‘sympathetic nervous system’ as opposed to when we are sad which is activated in the sedating parasympathetic nervous system.
3. To Get Rid Of Bacteria
Tears are what I like to call a ‘natural cleaning product’. Except instead of using wipes or disinfectant, our tears contain Lysozme, a fluid which kills over 95 % of bacteria in the space of 10 minutes. Without lyzome, our membranes would become dehydrated linking to point one and causing long term sight issues.
Tears that are utilized to flush out toxins and bacteria are known as ‘reflex tears’ which flush out irritants such as smoke particles or onion vapors.
4. Crying Can Decrease Manganese
You are probably thinking what the hell is manganese and so did I until I did some research on the health benefits of crying. Manganese is a mineral which can affect and create your ‘low mood’; crying can decrease manganese because it is often found in tears, rather than blood serum, which many people associate manganese with.
High manganese levels can have a direct correlation to severe or prominent anxiety and depression disorders.
5. It Helps You Move Forward
Sometimes we are pre-disposed to completely ignore our feelings in the hope that as if by magic the ‘happy fairy’ will come along and make everything better again but that is not the case at all. Instead leaving our negative emotions to ‘ferment’ has a damaging impact on our attitudes towards life and can even affect our relationships with others. Addressing that we need to cry will allow our ‘inner well’ to open up and make us feel a whole lot better. Essentially you will often find that crying, no matter how trivial you think it is in response to will help you move forward. I was never a believer in positive thinking before because I used to think it was matter of pretense but now I believe that as long as you address that you are upset you can move forward and not need to re-address the issues.
Moving forward is never easy but did you know that ‘crying is an art form’? Being able to/allowing yourself to cry is actually a great form of creative license (see point six)
6. Crying Allows You To Be Creative
I often find that my greatest blog posts and articles are usually written in the heat of the moment and that is because my creativity is fuelled by passion and emotion. It is why I do not post more than three or four times a week because I like my posts to be authentic and reflect how I really feel in that moment. Usually after writing I feel more calm and crying is a great outlet to induce creativity. When I try to write a post and I do not feel happy or sad i.e feel neutral, I feel that my posts become laboured. It is the same for other artists as well.
The reason why movies that have an unhappy ending i.e Titanic are so popular is because not only are they fueled by the creative imput of tears but it also makes us ‘feel’, thus having more of a personal connection to the film, or more specifically the characters.
7. Crying Is Not A Weakness But A Strength
We often associate ‘crying’ as something that denotes us being weak and society often relates this to gender constructs. During Primary Socialization, men and women are taught different values about how to handle emotions and while women are meant to be more ‘open’ about how they feel, men are openly discouraged from birth to reject any values that can be considered to be ‘effeminate’. What this means is that men are less inclined to cry in public, because they have been taught that ‘boys don’t cry’. It is damaging to not allow humans to ‘cry’ as it can increase stress related disorders, anxiety and depression, which in men are less likely to seek help than women.
Being cast into archetypes i.e ‘the weeping woman’ vs the ‘macho male’ is of course an urban myth but is one that is enforced through the media that we consume on a daily basis. After all have you noticed how many mainstream male acting roles play into the machoistic version of masculinity who have to demonstrate their ‘masculine prowess’ whereas sensitive, artistic types are either cast as gay, tortured or an outsider. It begs us to question why men have to be labelled in order to be allowed to show vunerability and cry in films. What sort of message does this send out to our young boys and girls?
A recent study titled the ‘Psychology of Men and Masculinity’ found that ‘early socialization’ and cultural differences established that ‘sex differences’ in crying is established by the time children become adolescents.
Why Do You Think Crying Is Good For You?
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