I often share about personal challenges and “unpleasant” emotions I go through publicly. Every time, I receive messages from worried women who try to comfort me.
I do appreciate kind words of sympathy, but sometimes I wonder why others get so worried. I am expressing my feelings not to get pity, but to normalize the waves of emotions that we experience daily.
I believe that honesty and authenticity create connections and deeper relationships.
Maybe it is a Cancerian quality, but I am used to going through sadness, joy, ecstatic bliss, frustration, shame, and so on within a couple of hours. I listen to my feelings. They are my teachers. They are also a reminder that we are still alive, and have a body, soul, and heart, and not just a walking mind.
Having a “bad” day usually does not shake me. I don’t think it’s because of endless reframing and turning everything into a positive. I am learning to allow my emotions to work through me. Furthermore, I have tools that support me to process my emotions and the challenges coming my way.
For example, last week I woke up and didn’t want to leave my bed. I took time for meditation and breathing practices but I still felt quite low. I decided I had to take some time off the screens and went for a long walk next to a river, and later the ocean. Then, I remembered that my dad’s death anniversary was coming up soon - hence, my body remembered times of grief.
Instead of resisting the “bad” mood, I allowed myself to be whatever came up during this walk (and it was a lot). By the end of it, I could feel my energy had shifted. Feelings are like ocean waves — they rise, crest, and recede, all day long. There is research that shows that the entire “wave” process takes 90 seconds if you are able to identify, label, and accept your emotion.
Instead of pushing down your emotions, let them teach you what is present for you at this moment.
There are wonderful embodiment techniques that help you to move through your emotions fluidly. They create more awareness of who you are and help you express your truth in an authentic way.
Here are my top 3 techniques to process your emotions and listen to their teachings:
1. Releasing breaths
This is the easiest tool for me. Available anytime. Taking deep inhales and exhaling through the mouth. My favorite at the moment to release tension, anger and frustration: the Lion’s breath.
Take a deep inhale through your nose and open your eyes wide. Look up to the space between your eyebrows, and open your mouth wide while sticking your tongue out as far as you can. Exhale through your mouth while making an extended “roaring” sound. More information here.
This year I started dancing and shaking in a more intentional way. I know it is a great tool for me to release stress, tension and stuck emotions. I also use it in my coaching sessions, to bring my clients back into their bodies.
Shaking can help regulate the nervous system and signals the brain to calm down, relax and let go. It also activates the lymphatic system of our body, which helps our body get rid of toxins. More information here.
Put on high-vibe music, like African drum rhythms, if you like. Stand with your feet hip-width apart, soften your knees, and drop your shoulders.
Begin shaking. Feel the bounce through your knees and let the vibration spread to your arms and shoulders.
Try to shake your entire body with little trembles and full-body shakes. Take deep breaths and open your mouth while you are exhaling. Make faces, and sounds, be silly, scream. Let go of whatever is present at the moment. Release your jaw.
You can shake for 5 to 15 Min. Try to come out slowly, lay on the ground, slow down your breath again and notice what has shifted in your body.
3. Blue spaces
Besides walking in the forest being my therapy No. 1, I come to recognize more and more the healing effects of water (link to forest bathing). Even if you don’t live close to the ocean or a river, you could go to a mineral water spa.
You can also use simple food baths in the evenings. For example, Epson salts and lavender essential oils release emotional and physical tension stored in your body. More information on blue therapy here.
Hope that you find this perspective and simple tools useful to embody your emotions. Let them flow through you like ocean waves without getting stuck, too attached or resenting them.
If you would like to learn more and experience the healing power of embodied coaching practices, I invite you to book a complimentary call with me. Click here to start your journey toward overcoming self-doubt, perfectionism and other blockages that keep you from creating your authentic work life.