Guest post provided by Marie Miguel for BetterHelp.com .
How To Use Mindfulness To Handle Difficult Emotions
With mindfulness on the rise, it is no wonder that people are now turning to its practices to prevent and relieve symptoms of mental illnesses such as and anxiety. It has also proven helpful in dismantling difficult emotions in everyday life.
With mindfulness, people learn to ground themselves in the present moment, become aware of their bodily sensations and let go of negative thoughts and feelings.
So, how does someone handle difficult thoughts and feelings intelligently? Below are 5 ways to practice mindful emotional regulation:
Be aware of your feelings
This calls for the skill of observation: simply be aware of whatever you are feeling without suppressing it, ignoring it or using a more positive emotion to replace it. By observing your emotions as you would the weather, you bring yourself out of the victim mentality and engage with your feelings in a healthy way. Bringing awareness to your feelings, particularly in times of great distress and pain, is powerful in and of itself and is the first step toward healing.
Find acceptance in “What is”
Avoid the “could have, would have, should have” mentality and seek to accept things as they are right now, whether you like them or not. When you cling onto your desires and expectations, you set yourself up for disappointment, frustration and suffering. This process of acceptance may take time – perhaps a long time – but understanding that a significant amount of pain stems from wishing things were different can help create space between you and your emotions.
Understand that feelings are constantly changing
Nothing is permanent, and life is as changeable and dynamic as your thoughts and feelings. This is understandably hard to believe in the midst of great pain, but once you are aware of your feelings and find acceptance in your situation, you will notice the ebb and flow of feelings like the tides of an ocean. If, however, these emotions become overwhelming, it may be time to seek therapy. Online platform offers private, affordable and convenient counselling with licensed therapists who are dedicated to your healing and growth.
Give yourself compassion
Sometimes, we are too hard on ourselves: “I should be over this by now,” “Why am I so affected by this?” But one of the most important steps in handling difficult emotions is giving yourself empathy for having them in the first place. There is wisdom in painful emotions; they give us insight into our identity, our needs, and our values. Allow yourself to embody your feelings and open yourself fully to the pain, knowing that they will pass in time.
Do not let your pain define you
As intense as your feelings may be, they do not define you and are separate to who you really are. By being observing your feelings from an outside perspective and disassociating yourself from them, you break yourself free from their hold. Remind yourself constantly that you are whole person who happens to be dealing with difficult emotions at this point in time and affirm to yourself that you will handle it with intelligence and loving care, just as you would for a small child.
When you bring mindfulness into the way you regulate and process painful feelings, you can dramatically reduce the amount of suffering you experience, enhance your well-being and strengthen your quality of life.
Marie Miguel has been a writing and research expert for nearly a decade, covering a variety of health- related topics. Currently, she is contributing to the expansion and growth of a free online mental health resource with BetterHelp.com. With an interest and dedication to addressing stigmas associated with mental health, she continues to specifically target subjects related to anxiety and depression.