Day 15; Letting Go.
Today was a day of strong emotions and a lack of motivation for life. Now in my previous post I talked about becoming aware of the body and the impermanence we experience of the sensations that come and go. We find that they no longer disturb us once we choose to be unaffected by it all. With the physical pain, we acknowledge it but know that it will pass.
With the emotions, I learned through an amazing book called “Letting Go” about how to truly meditate through different feelings. It talked of letting the emotion stay, not forcing yourself to cry or rage to get it out, but also not holding it in. I started to practice this myself. When I would feel sadness, or frustration I would sit down and just breathe. Sometimes when we feel that way, we think we need to cry to get it out, but this can also become another coping mechanism to the emotion, another way of trying to process it because we don’t know what else to do with it. I became mindful, and would allow the tears to come out if they needed to, but didn’t force myself to cry or keep on dwelling once it was done. Sometimes at this point I would feel as if I was just about to cry, but I wouldn’t. This point of the emotion was uncomfortable because normally I would get upset, or find something to distract myself, but instead I just sat with it. It would build and build.
And then it faded away. For the first time the heavy weight of these emotions lifted. Even if I had cried, the heavy feeling would’ve held on afterward. Now, I felt lighter, like a weight had come off my shoulders. This was the true way to face emotions. To just sit and let them be there. To not try and find a way to get rid of them, but to view them as neutral feelings.
Just like the way our body sensations come and go, we can start to recognise that our emotions come and go too. Taking this lesson into everyday life, it becomes a laughable thing to think we reacted to every single emotion in a way that we wished we wouldn’t. All because at the time, we allowed ourselves to get sucked into the emotion and tried to escape it. If we let ourselves feel it and run its course, it no longer controls us.
Then comes the realisation that this anger, or sadness, or frustration is not who we truly are. It is something we experience, but it is not us.
The next realisation for me was so important to my development; no matter the feeling, it’s okay to feel that.
You are allowed to be mad. You have every reason to be sad in those moments when you are feeling sadness. As long as we don’t take these things out on others, we have every right to acknowledge that we are not feeling good right now. Too often we put away the feelings that are viewed as negative because we think we shouldn’t be feeling them. They build and build and come out in other ways or times that are not beneficial to us.
So if you can do anything for yourself today, I encourage you to just give yourself permission. Permission to feel whatever you need to feel right now, and to be okay with that. So it can move on in a more natural and lasting way.