Photos via Pinterest.
If you are stressed, worried, grumpy, angry or sad today, this post is for you.
I’ve certainly had my share of days lately when I get attached to negative emotions and can’t seem to shake whatever I am feeling. I react when things don’t go my way, or get upset by the unexpected. I get frustrated with others or myself, and feel disappointed.
Today, instead of staying there with that feeling and dwelling on it, letting it control you… I invite you to try these simple practices.
1. Notice the breath. The breath is an amazing tool for re-centering. Ask, How am I breathing right now? Can I slow down my breath? Invite a deeper breath in through the nose, noticing how the whole ribcage expands as the body fills up with fresh air. Notice at the bottom of the breath, how you can pull the belly button in toward the spine, emptying the lungs, squeezing out the breath. You are empty; you have released something. Now, fill up. Bring in peace, ease, and a glowing calm that reaches every part of your body. See if you can carry that sense of relaxed awareness – and the physical practice of deep breathing – with you for at least 10 minutes, and you’ll really calm down.
2. Actively practice gratitude. Bring to mind what you are grateful for, right now. Things are rough, maybe you are truly suffering, or maybe you are just overreacting – but despite that, there are blessings surrounding you. What can you notice right now, and feel grateful for?
3. Separate yourself from what you are feeling. Imagine your emotion as a leaf passing in the wind, or an ocean wave that washes upon the shore. That leaf, or that wave, does not control you. Neither do your emotions.
4. Talk to someone. Often things become clearer when we communicate them. When I talk to loved ones, it helps me get out of my own head, and out of my own way.
What helps you release negative emotions?
PS I’m sending you a big hug right now :)
This post was inspired by Zen Habits.