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Gillian Sanger

How do you manage tricky or challenging emotions?

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Hi Gill

Challenging emotions, are challenging. I have a thought that comes up and create a strong emotion , it is the thought that " I'm not good enough " usually create a thingness in my throat area and upper chest, I feel it creeping up. It's dark , heavy , and dry feeling . I have noticed that the feeling this very uncomfortable. FEELING IT and explore the middle of it is the only way to easy it up , and resolve it. So usually I try to remove myself from everything and go to a quiet place, where ever that is.  I  Close my eyes and stop for a moment , take slow breaths and focus my attention around  the area , as I would stop time so I can shine the light of my awareness to this area so I can see it better . I try to separate myself from the feeling/ emotion and and I tell myself that I'm not this feeling/ emotion it is not true. More I more look into this feeling I realize that it is NOT  true just a trick of my mind. It takes couple minutes to go through it but I can feel that it resolving so I can go back what I was doing with knowing that this was just a disturbance in my mind and build on a false  believe so the feeling can't sustain it self for long if I'm mindful and curious about . 

I'm practicing this since awhile I do feel that with times it becomes less, still coming up but is not so strong anymore because I see it much faster that is NOT TRUE . Even times when I feeling it to coming up I say.. oh here you are , bring it on , I`m ready .  More I look , more I see. 

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A good friend of mine said to me years ago.. 'Invite those emotions in for tea and chat with them.' So I do just that. I also add an intention to the Universe 'if this is my stuff I'm feeling, show me how to deal with it. if it's NOT mine, I release it back to the Universe.' 

Edited by Mitchell
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What also helps me to navigate difficult emotions is to look into where I might be judging or belittling myself for feeling emotions. It's easy to exacerbate an inner struggle but piling on a layer of shame. Breathing through the experience and honouring it without attaching to it has proven quite soothing for me.

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I love that idea of inviting the emotions over for tea.  I guess that is what I do.  I try to look at the emotion that I am feeling as non attached or as a friend.  Like someone has passed and I am sad.  I think, "Ok, I am sad.  What am I sad for? Then I reason,  do I control when someone leaves?  NO.  Did they have a life yet ahead of them? No, or they would be here.  I really go back to when I was 12 years old. 

My grandfather was in the hospital hooked up to tubes and big as ever like a blown up balloon.  He was a tall, thin man.  I cried and cried, begging and pleading him to not go.  I felt very sad.  But as the days went by, I had a dream.  I put myself in my grandpa's space.  I looked terrible foolish.  I remember that day and will never forget it.  I will never beg someone to stay on this earth when it is their time to go.  

It is a special moment to let people go.  Just as we let kids go from home.  I truly believe in the divine energy after passing.  

What helps for me also is to do a memorial to them.  At the time.  I control my emotions so much better now.  I have helped a couple people pass over when they were needed.  

But now when I need to cry or be angry or upset, I wait for my space and let it all out.  When I had the children, one autistic and the other obsessive compulsive, I would have to go to my car and scream and yell at the car for awhile.  It was quite refreshing to be able to let that scream out.  I would be fine after that.  Thankfully that was only a couple of times.  It has to come out right?  

Being grateful seems to set my emotions on the right track.  Growing up I did not realize this.  This took years to understand.  It is a wonderful understanding.   

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I am in the process. Some days are better than others and those good days I notice I have had better sleep and self care routine . Once the difficult emotions happen I find my new routine of excercise helps which also involve decompression and breathing for 10 minutes. Also a very good cry or cries. Prayer and gratitude practice. Mantras everyday especially helps.

 A good long walk with my dog in the fresh air and light. Or a starry night stroll. Feeling my breath reminds me that everything will be okay no matter what. These feelings are like the waves or the clouds as well as music and breath. That in itself brings me hope, patience and compassion. As long as I keep my  health moving positive I can better cope with naturally using positive strategies rather than falling into the despair or complexities of life for too long. When I am at a lost and confused I play my guitar for hours and get lost (or found)in between each note.

Edited by Bluebabee
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Hello community! This is quite an old thread, but I hope you are all doing well! I just saw this video posted on the Mindfulness Exercises YouTube account and thought I'd share it here. It is a clip of George Mumford from his workshop with the Mindfulness Meditation Teacher Training Program. It is about investigating our emotions.

 

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