Sunday, November 13, 2011


A good friend reminded me of a helpful concept I put out once and I thought I’d touch on it again (Thanks Scott). We all seem to be struggling with adversity, lower-level atmospheric disturbances and people acting in ways we wish they wouldn’t and it affects us until we can learn to detach. Well, before you can get to a place of complete detachment, there is a step. Well, at least I think so. That step is surrendering to the tidal waves of emotion and just letting them hit without taking any action. It really is that simple. We cannot control the actions of others and its just not right to bully, belittle or attack people into doing what we think they want. So, the only thing left to do if we want to grab hold of harmony instead of choking on our own poison of anger and venomous words coming out of our own mouths is to just go silent and let the waves of emotion crash down on you like the waves of the ocean crash down on the shore.

We don’t have to stop the tides and in fact, the more we resist and fight against them, the more discomfort we will feel deep within us. So, we acknowledge the emotions that come. Maybe its sadness, frustration, grieving loss, anger or sorrow that you’re feeling. It doesn’t really matter which one it is that hits you, just notice it and realize you don’t have to do anything about it. In fact, that little urge within that prompts you falsely to do something is really just you resisting pain. The truth is, the sooner we stop resisting and just learn to go with the flow, the sooner we’ll realize that the emotion will wash over us and then recede much quicker. The best advice I can give a soul is to take no action until heavy emotion subsides. Consult with a friend, a counselor or minister about how you are feeling but disengage from resisting the emotion or fighting against it. We cannot change the actions of others who either inadvertently or specifically intend to create harm in our lives but what we can do is learn to detach from it little by little until you get to the point that you realize, you don’t have to chose pain and you don’t have to choose the negative emotions at all. Like my favorite Zen story, “Is that so?” you just see what’s coming and just stop resisting it.

It’s hard to just “go with the flow” when you’re angry or upset. However, you can rid yourself of feelings of helplessness or being a victim by taking control of what you chose to do in response to whatever emotion or situation it is you face. Another important point, I have to say, is that the more you tell your story with vitriol and hate, the more you just add to your own pain. Stop talking and turn your focus inward where true healing can begin. The waves will crest and fall and if you are an adult, you’ve likely learned self-control by now, so employ these tactics to master self and respond to what you face by removing the power from it. You remove the power over what you face by standing on top of your emotions, knowing they are there and choosing healthy outlets. Maybe you focus on something else for a while…clean house, clean your car, clean your room, mop a floor, do dishes…do a lot of dishes (I love this one…I use it as a meditation)…just empower yourself by refusing to react. When you react and strike out, you give away your power. When you stand up and respond responsibly with your emotions, you stand in your power.

We have free will and we can choose to use it however we want but if we want freedom from emotional torment, we have to cut off the sources of that torment and know this, the primary source of torment is you and your reactive thoughts. Stay with me just a minute because I want you to understand this sentiment is not intended to blame the victim because no one has my empathy more than victims but, victims can take back their power through self-accountability, self-reflection, deep and honest intro-spection and lots of self-kindness and self-love. People do sometimes become victimized but our thoughts following and reactive emotions can tend to do us the rest of the way in. We can’t always help what happens to us but we can help what happens next with our thoughts and our responses. We can choose love, light and positive thinking to stand in our power or we can chose hate, darkness and negative thinking and give away all of our power. My vote is with the positive as I do not wish to lend further effect to external causes. I know that at least that part is within my control. When you can get some practice under your belt, you’ll find your automatic thinking begins to change and over time you learn to more easily get to the next step which is detachment. It takes effort, I will be very honesty but hey, you’re worth it and so is your sanity. So, what do you say? Can you let the waves just come and go and learn to not attach heavier emotions to them? You can do it if you make up your mind and employ the right tools to keep yourself empowered. I hope you’ll consider. I wish you much love, light and positive energy on your journey dear souls!

(c) 2001 article and photo (link is not mine but self-explanatory in terms of any potential copyright there).

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