Photo by William Farlow (Unsplash)
Sit with your own emotions
Whatever is arising at any moment, acknowledge that and allow yourself to feel your own feelings. Suppressing them will only mean they will explode later. Find a safe space to feel your emotions.
Have compassion for yourself
While this may sound like a cliché, it’s actually one of the hardest things to do. One of the clichés is that if we are evolved (or want to evolve) we won’t experience any harsh feelings. Shadow is where there is light, some might say.
Yes, I know, you heard this time and time again and you probably read it everywhere. But that doesn’t make it any less true Because meditation develops that inner “witness”, that actually teaches you to take space between your mind’s content and your actions. As you witness that mind’s content, you get comfortable with silence. Your emotions get a space. You will learn to acknowledge that emotion is simply an emotion. You will not get caught up in the emotion. It will flow through you – and you will not flow with it. Meditation doesn’t teach you to be emotion-less. On the contrary – to be with your emotion in a productive way.
Learning to breathe deeply is immensely important for anyone wanting to regulate their own emotions. Breathing has been connected to memory and emotional processing in many scientific studies. Shallow breathing causes anxiety and the other way around. Unless we train we don’t really know how to breathe deeply, our breath remains shallow. When we breathe deeply we send a message to the body that we’re safe. Shallow breathing signals dangerous responses. If you decide to take up breathing practices, then good for you! If not, simply being mindful of how you carry yourself around and being mindful to deepen your breath is helping immensely.
Move your body
A healthy body is a moving one. Moving creates endorphins and releases dopamine and serotonin – hormones that are helping us function in calmer, more normal ways. You may choose to go for a walk, do some yoga or dance. Whatever you do, make sure it doesn’t exhaust and you respect your bodies’ limits while perpetually challenging them. Enjoy the benefits and incorporate them daily
Other things like finding a strong support system, taking time to rest instead of overworking, and setting time aside for your favorite things (like cooking, listening to music) are all parts of a balanced lifestyle.
Thank you for being here with us on this mission. Your support truly matters.
Ema and Chris
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This article was first published on ispeakyoga.com by Ema