What do you do when emotions become unwieldy?
Common advice is to distract yourself from what you’re feeling. Or reframe (or watch your thoughts/emotions objectively).
Those tools can be useful in the short-term and to an extent.
But the deeper path of being at peace with life, of growing your inner wholeness calls for a different path.
One of resolution and integration.
Distracting yourself from your feelings doesn’t resolve them. It just drives them underground. In a quiet (or stressed) moment, they’ll be back.
It’s useful in the short-term when you need to get something accomplished. Long-term it leaves you on the hamster wheel.
Reframing is helpful in some situations where a habit of focusing on the negative has developed.
Like distraction, objective surveillance of your thoughts and emotions takes a lot of energy and will power. It can lead you to hypervigilance (and exhaustion).
But there’s another perspective.
One that recognizes emotions as messengers. Messengers that are bringing information to help you thrive in life.
If the feelings keep coming back, chances are they have something to tell you.
When you recognize feelings as bringing info, you relate to them in a new way.
You stop fearing and resisting them. You realize that having so-called ‘negative’ emotions doesn’t make you a bad person.
You learn to digest your emotions, gleaning their nourishment.
That’s resolution and integration. It’s using your emotions to contribute to your growth and wholeness.
And it’s a whole lot more powerful than shooting the messenger.
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