Thoughts and Emotions
by Friends of Godwin
What we are trying to do with an open attitude towards our negative emotions is to learn to make friends with our monsters. A phrase you can say to yourself which can be helpful sometimes is: “It’s okay not to feel okay.” It is really about being friendly with yourself, accepting what is happening. I know it is not easy, but slowly, slowly, something interesting might happen. Your monsters might lose some of their strength. Helpful here is our friend the breath and the sensations in our body. These two friends help us to experience the present moment, and they can prevent emotions from blowing up.
Another tool related to this is learning about our negative emotions, learning about our monsters. Because we don’t like them we don’t experience them fully. We don’t really make an effort to know them, to learn about them, to discover, to explore. There are so many things that we can learn about these emotions. One thing you may discover is the connection between thoughts and emotions. It can be a very useful discovery, that it is really the thought that is creating the emotion. One can then work with the thought that precedes the emotion as it arises.