I’ve been learning about what happens to the brain when we are feeling anxious or panicked. It has helped me understand (to simplify) that the part of my brain that is involved in thinking clearly and making good decisions goes offline when I’m anxious.
I’ve noticed that when I am overwhelmed with emotion I am not kind. I am not kind to myself, saying things like ‘just get over it, snap out of it, why can’t you do ______?’ or I’m unkind to other people, ‘way to cut me off’ ‘could you drive any slower?’ ‘Nice outfit!’ Finding something to be grateful for just seems absolutely unattainable, especially when I am angry!
So what can we do when we are having feelings of anger, anxiety, overwhelm, etc?
Be with the emotion:
It seems the hardest thing to do is to be with what you are feeling instead of trying to change it or fix it. What would happen if we let ourselves feel angry for a little while? Is it ok to see into the darker side of ourselves for a little bit? We are not bad if we are not feeling peppy, happy and excited!
I’ve noticed that when I’m not feeling the way that I would like to feel I get angry or I want to change it IMMEDIATELY. I wish I was feeling happy and free but I am currently sinking into this moment of boredom, irritation, jealousy and anger all combined into one.
I was at a party this weekend where everyone was drinking, letting loose and having a good time! My feet hurt, I was irritable and uncomfortable in my body and I just felt SO incredibly BORING! Typically I would notice these feelings and have a few drinks to help me shift my mood so I could ‘keep up’ with everyone else.
What would happen if we allowed ourselves to be how we are without trying to change it or fix it? This is a question because I am still wondering, practicing and exploring. The practices of yoga and mindfulness help increase awareness and give us tools.
What if we let emotions come in as they do. Notice what it feels like in our bodies and minds then find a tool to help alleviate the pain? I feel like it is giving me a sense of resilience that I’ve never had before. Finding compassion for the moment instead of feeling like the way I am feeling is wrong or bad.
I will get back to you on this experiment! 🙂 What has worked for you and your process?
Photo courtesy of Pixabay.com
Upcoming teacher trainings in Denver, CO and Portland, ME