I hope you all enjoyed part 1 of this mini series, which takes a look at the idea of living a mindful life. Since this part is not necessarily related to food or fitness, I will keep it short for you guys.
Let’s talk about being mindful of emotions – ours and others around us.
Humans are capable of six basic types of emotions: anger, disgust, fear, joy, sadness, and surprise.
They may be displayed as verbally and non-verbally. This is where it is so important to pay attention to detail.
Okay, let’s discuss self-awareness of emotions. Allow yourself to feel. If you’re down and sad, do not shun that feeling away. Explore it first. Then try to revert that negative emotion into a positive one.
When we ignore our emotions, we risk that idea of”bottling things up” and then out of nowhere results and explosion. It is kind-of like shaking a soda bottle for a while, pushing the cap little by little, then BOOM! Explosion.
Try to take 5 minutes each day and do some self-reflection. Think about how you are feeling. Why are you feeling this emotion? Is it positive or negative?
If it is negative, what can we do to morph it into something positive?
If it’s positive, think about what may have contributed to that positive emotion, or what was associated with it. That way you can get yourself to that good feeling more often.
Be in-tune with your emotions, don’t run away from the negatives, and don’t go forcing the happiness. Just let it out, and let it be.
Now that we have looked at ourselves, how about we try something a little more challenging…reading other’s emotions. At face value that wealthy-looking person in front of you in line at Starbucks may seem content and mentally happy – but take a second look. Read his or her eyes, and nonverbal cues, and body language. They may be using material things to cover up years of unhappiness.
Your successful co-worker who seems like they have it all together, promotion after promotion…be careful. They may be battling immense fear of failing.
Be mindful of other’s feelings and battles.
–Without disclosing details I will share a quick personal example. In high school I was subjected to a very traumatic event, which resulted in PTSD. I was too embarrassed to talk to my friends, because I was the positive happy one – I didn’t want others knowing about my skeletons in my closet. I didn’t think they would understand, so I just brushed it under the rug and did my best to smile. This went on for over a year(and still sneaks up on me every now and then), and it was really frustrating to not have someone to relate to. The event I went through just did not really happen to people where I grew up. While everyone saw a smile and heard laughter, I was really struggling inside to keep it together. Years later, things are much better. I ended up seeing a therapist a few times to talk things out, and allow my emotions to run freely, which is SO important to do.
Try to ignore the face value. Be mindful of what may be lying underneath.
One phrase I try to live by each day: