Emotional Wellness

Welcome 2019! It’s wonderful to meet you! You with your fading holiday music, dimming twinkle lights, (typically) slick roads, and (typically) brutally cold temperatures. (What’s up 55 & sunshine KC?!) It’s a delight… truly!  If we didn’t have winter to chill our bones, we may not embrace and appreciate the blessed warmth of summer. But this month’s topic isn’t the weather… It’s your heart. It’s your mind. It’s your feelings – it’s the combination of all of it. 

EMOTIONAL WELLNESS. 

I’m just going to toss it out there like it ain’t no big thing.  The very first Lumina Newsletter; we’re starting out with a doozy….

Emotional Wellness = Coping effectively with life and
creating satisfying relationships.
SAMHSA

I’m going to take you through a brief exercise of awareness I’ve learned and am borrowing from my friends over at Vision Pursue (Check them out! )

Take a second to check-in with yourself about what you’re experiencing emotionally right. Now.  What are you feeling?  Maybe you have a big meeting later today that’s producing some anxiety? Or you are beside-yourself-giddy about a new client you just landed? Simply notice your current experience. Close your eyes if you need to; bring awareness to your body.  Next, we will SEE.

SEE = Separate. Embrace. Evaluate.

The first step is to Separate from the emotion. You’ve brought awareness to the surface and you’re noticing an emotion.  Now what exactly are you feeling? Could one emotion be stealing the show or is there a combination of several? If you’re at a loss, here’s a bank that may help:

Elated, frustrated, grouchy, giddy, pleased, anxious, hurt, disappointed, content,
peaceful, ashamed, overwhelmed, hopeful, lonely, aggressive, interested….

When you experience something your mind automatically gives it meaning or an emotion – our minds are so powerful! But, “…you are not your emotions any more than you are the pain you feel from a cut on your hand.” (JM)

Label, observe, and describe the emotion.

Can you notice where it’s located in your body? Does it feel like anything, physically?  Calling out and separating from the emotion in this way gives you space to question and embrace.  You’re acknowledging the reality of this present moment as it is. And getting honest with yourself about how you really feel.

…I hope I haven’t lost you yet because the next step is SUPER important.

Embrace

If you’re resisting the reality of this emotion, then you’re not going to be able to do anything about it or choose the next right step. Because…well...you’re resisting.  Your energy is aimed towards trying to prevent something that is already happening, which attaches you to the emotion rather than letting it move through you. This may not seem like a big deal for emotions typically deemed as “positive” such as the high you feel when your workday is complete on a Friday. But that can influence your reaction on Sunday evening when you know you’re headed back to work soon. You’ve attached to that high, so the low may feel lower.

Emotional awareness and wellness has so much to do with living in the present. Now that you’ve named the emotion – open your heart, take a deep breath and FULLY welcome the emotion. I’m not kidding here – even if you’ve deemed it as “negative” take that baby in.

It can help to physically shape your body in an open-hearted posture. Roll your shoulders back, spread your arms like wings, raise your eyes to the sky, and take deep breaths while you welcome and ACCEPT this emotion…this space…this very moment.  BEAUTIFUL.

So, you’re clear on what you’re experiencing.  You’ve honored the space. You’ve embraced the moment.  What’s next?

Evaluate

What can I control? Is there something I need to let go of? Someone to apologize to? Someone to reach out to for clarification? Perhaps no response is needed other than getting back to the present moment. Ask yourself , “What will honor me in this situation?”

Check-in with your integrity.  Check-in with your boundaries.

So many of us are not taught how to decipher, understand, embrace, and live out our emotions.  We get stuck in them. We stuff things down – sometimes waaaayyy down because it feels way too scary, way too vulnerable, we’re way too busy so we tell ourselves we’ll “deal with it later”, or we’re so focused on getting to that daggum pot of gold at the end of the rainbow that we distract ourselves from experiencing this moment, right here. All we ever have anyway.

GET CURIOUS about what you feel in a day.  Then really feel it.
Then do what you need to, to protect, honor and live your absolutely amazing life.

Awareness Review and SEE concepts borrowed and reprinted with permission from Vision Pursue, Jon McGraw.