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Being with Difficult Emotions

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Learn how to cope, sweet friend. There will always be dark days.    –Kris Carr

Feeling states tend to come and go. When we learn to meet difficult emotional states skillfully, we may minimize their tendency to overshadow everything. It’s not the events in our lives that cause our suffering but our reaction to those events. The way to begin skillfully relating with emotions is to practice bringing awareness to emotional states. Try checking in several times each day and noticing the state of the heart or emotional body. Inquire within, “What am I feeling?” and see if you can name the feeling. Naming the feeling activates an area of the brain that begins to calm you. Then inquire, “Where am I feeling it in the body?” Scan the body to try and identify where this feeling state is expressing in the body. Next inquire, “What is the quality of the sensations?” Is there tightness? Throbbing? Heat? Coolness? Now try to rest the attention on the sensations in the body and notice whether they increase in intensity, decrease or remain the same. When the mind wanders to evaluative thinking about the feeling or situation, see if you can gently bring the attention back to being with the sensations. Feelings are like waves—they rise, swell, crest and fall. Try to ride the waves of emotions rather than becoming entangled in them, and notice what happens.

Warmly,
Jen

UPCOMING EVENTS

Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) 8-week class will be offered on Thursday mornings from 9am – 11am. There will be a free orientation/information session on Thursday September 1, 2016 from 9 – 11am, and the class will be offered Thursdays September 8 – October 27, 2016 9-11am with a day of mindfulness on Saturday October 22 from 9am – 3pm. Participating in an MBSR class has been shown to reduce symptoms of stress, anxiety, depression and pain and to increase a sense of peace, happiness and well-being.
Cost is $425. Payment plans are available. Registration is limited and required. Email Jen to register. 

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