There are times when taking a walk or watching a funny video doesn't completely shake the anxiety, the frustration, the sadness, the aggravation, or fill in the blank with an uncomfortable emotion.
"Why is this emotion still here? How do I get rid of it? Where did it come from?", are all common questions probably most of us have had. The first thing a lot of us will try to do is to get rid of it or push it away. But, have you noticed the more you push something away, the more it stays or even comes back with a vengeance? What can be done to stop this cycle of suffering?
First, it's important for us to recognize that the emotions we experience are not us, rather, they are messengers. This perspective allows us to detach from the emotion in a way where it doesn't become our identity. Imagine you are creating space between you and the emotion, so there is you and then there is the emotion, like a guest in your house. If emotions are messengers, the next step is to uncover what their message is.
Let's pretend that the emotion is a guest that has come to visit you with an important message. Like any good host/hostess we welcome them in and invite them to have a seat. Then, we offer them something to drink (tea or coffee seems safe, since we don't know how our guest can handle their liquor:). Next, we ask them how they're doing, and we LISTEN. Their answer may not come right away or be super clear right off the bat, but what we are doing is letting them have a voice and be seen. That's really what emotions want, to be seen and heard. Try to listen with compassion and non-judgement. Sometimes it can be helpful to write out the information you receive or to talk to someone.
Here's a step by step to help identify why the emotion has come to visit you: