There will come a time when you will be overtaken by grief, anger, despair, heartbreak, fear. In those moments, don’t gloss over these feelings, distract yourself or run away. These emotions need your attention NOW. They are your compass to your truth, energetic packets with information.
“E-Motion” = Energy in Motion
A Practice for Dealing with Your Emotions
Meditation is a powerful tool to help you come face to face with your reality, and give these emotions the attention they need.
Take time out from work or family, go into a quiet room, and sit, consciously focusing on your breath.
Then, scan your body, head to toe, noticing the sensations arising. If you feel burning or aching in your heart, spend time there, feeling these sensations. Name them, validate them “I feel burning in my chest. I feel my heart pounding.” See if you can ask yourself how you feel: “Am I feeling sad? Am I feeling angry?” Do this for twenty minutes, trying not to get lost in the story of why you feel this way. Just pay attention to the feelings and sensations, not judging them, wishing them to go away.
“Anger is like a howling baby, suffering and crying.
Your anger is your baby. The baby needs his mother
to embrace him. You are the mother.
Embrace your baby.”~ Thich Nhat Hanh
I suggest upping your emotion vocabulary, by using this feelings inventory created by The Center for Nonviolent Communication.
If you would like to take this a step further, get to know what you’re needing, or better yet, what needs that aren’t being met. This will help provide you wisdom as to what you’re feeling right now, and why.
It’s part of the human experience to have a set of needs, many of which are not being fulfilled – and we are consciously or unconsciously spending all of our time looking for strategies to fulfill them.
See if you can just name these needs, without trying to solve for them for right now. Sometimes just knowing what you’re needing right now is the most relevant form of wisdom.
This practice is called Self Empathy, and is very useful form of self-understanding and taking care of one’s emotional health – a way of reparenting ourselves.
While you’re going through the process of sitting with your feelings, you may notice that the feelings may subside.
These sensations may even intensify.
If this is the case, try not to get overwhelmed or scared – find other moments in the day to sit with your emotions. This is the work of the true Spiritual Warrior.
I once heard from aBuddhist monk that most of us carry some form of PTSD (Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder) due to the stressful nature of our lives.
Many of us have never even truly processed the trauma that’s stored in our body consciousness from a tragedy, such as a breakup, death or sudden lay off.
When life throws us these curve balls, we’re accustomed to simply rolling with the punches, and getting on with our work, as though nothing’s happened. Therapy helps, but we are at a point where we need to incorporate more mind/body/heart/spirit methods of healing and reconciliation. Get the support you need to face your feelings with courage, wisdom and strength.
As you patiently face and heal your emotions, you will be able to transform this suffering into even more grace, joy and meaning. You’ll develop resilience, and a more embodied form of leadership. Your relationships will become stronger, authentic and more connected.
Life will become juicy. You’ll see 🙂
As Thich Nhat Hanh says, “No mud, no lotus”.
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