Have you noticed that even when you’re on holiday, or spending a lovely summers evening with friends and family; that you can still find yourself feeling emotions that you find difficult, such as sadness, boredom, anxiety, disappointment…
As human beings, we all experience a whole rainbow of different emotions both pleasant and unpleasant – that’s what it is to be human! Yet, many of us try to avoid or resist the unpleasant emotion and this will only fuel it and the resistance results in us feeling even worse.
Mindfulness helps us to practice having a different attitude towards our own emotions, one that is welcoming, kind and gentle. Instead of resisting the physical sensations of emotions by endlessly engaging in the script or story about the emotion; we can learn to have a different attitude of welcoming and feeling them in the body, naming the emotions, allowing and accepting them with curiosity and learning from them.
Try practising the following five stages to start turning towards emotions:
1. Feel them
2. Notice where they manifest in your body
3. Name them
4. Allow them to be there
5. Ask what the feeling, sensation or emotion is there to tell you
Here are seven of our favourite quotes that can be really helpful to aid our practice, to gradually develop a new attitude that allows us to manage difficult emotions in a healthy way. Remember too that if we allow ourselves to experience and feel the difficult emotions, we also make ourselves available to feel and experience the pleasant ones, such as feeling joy, relief, happiness, contentment and peace.
Emotions are just visitors, let them come and go
What we resist persists
What we feel we heal
It’s ok not to be ok
All emotions are welcome
Name it to Tame it
Emotions are there to be felt, not thought about