Can you choose your emotions just like clothes?
Complete this sentence. I feel __________. Happy? Sad? Depressed even. What if you could change your emotions like how you can change your clothes? What would you pick out to “wear”?
Well I have a secret.
Whatever your focus on, you feel. I know. It’s shocking. When I go into Angry Hulk mode, every single thing seems to make me mad. Likewise, when I go into “my life sucks” mode in my head, everything seems to go wrong. The truth is, I just attract more of that feeling that I don’t want by looking at things this way.
As I would sit in traffic, I would purposely put my favorite music on so that I could focus on that instead of the feeling of anxiety by “being late” or by “being stuck”. I wasn’t late. I was arriving when I was destined to and I wasn’t stuck…I just simply was there for a moment.
As I thought about the things that were wrong in my life, they seem to multiply like that old saying “things come in threes.” I can change my emotions just like my clothes and I have learned to stop a spiral as soon as it starts.
So how can you choose your emotions?
- Take control of your head. Mentally, slap yourself. Say Snap outta it or whatever you need to do, but remind yourself that it is time to shift your focus. Does dwelling on the bad make it better? No. Could it possibly make it worse? Yes because you could have a heart attack from the stress, or you could experience heart palpitations from working yourself up over the “thing” in your head. Trick to try: Visualize a gear shift in you head. It is now shifting from ____ to happy. From whatever that emotion is to the opposite. Lots of time in my group work or my Club, I will tell them to use a thesaurus and work from the feeling they want to get to. So let’s say it’s peaceful. We will now shift to that feeling mentally as we visualize a hammock or a garden scene or whatever takes us there. As we do that, our brain actually sends out the “shifting” signal so that we really are taking back control. You can do this my friends.
- A body in motion. So you can’t really start running around wherever you are, but how are you being? I teach a mindful yoga class and let me tell you, the first one, people are all kinds of ways not paying attention to the body language they are sending me. Phones out, arms crossed, angry-looking eyeballs and frowns. It almost knocks me over at the first yoga class, but I then start to work my magic. By the end people are so used to watching how they are being that I can tell. Try this: Bring your shoulders up to a shrug then gently rotate them away from your ears. Let the shoulder blades glide down your back and now bring your hands to heart center with the palms touching. We call this prayer hands, Anjali Mudra or even Namaste hands, but it is a gesture of peace. Breathe in and out for a round of three and see how you feel now. Better? I thought so.
- What are you saying to yourself? Are you stuck in some old cycle of rubbish? Do you think things should have turned out differently so you are in constant drag mode? << Drag or lift baby. Trust me. Your feed is full of people who are dragging your energy down daily. Don’t carry that with you. Wake up. Decide to feel awesome. Proceed to do just that. Each and every day in my Club, we are constantly re-aligning ourselves. If the mood starts to shift to drag, I encourage my mindful students to think about ways to cut that drag force out of their lives. How can we do this? Try this tip: Leave $5 forward at the register for the next person. Hold the door when you see someone coming. Make eye contact with the homeless even if your friend says “You don’t know if they are really homeless. I see them here allll the time.” << note friend is a drag force. get to a room of people working on the same goals as you and if you can’t be there in person, try a virtual club. But make sure there are more lift forces in your life!!
Would I like to see you in my Club? Absolutely. But only if you really want to work on the things we just talked about and you feel you could really benefit from learning more mindful practices. Just hit the “I need support.” button over here. <<< as I linked those words to my platform. I don’t hold you hostage and you are free to leave at any time. I am just adding some tools to that toolbox of yours for a day when you really need it.