I’m gonna tell you a story about myself that I’m really ashamed of. I’m afraid you’ll judge me and look down on me. I already beat myself up enough about it and I came to the realization that it’s important to share our scars and be vulnerable so we can heal together.
We’ve all allowed our emotions to run away with us, sometimes so much, it causes shame and regret.
In the moment, it’s human nature to not want to feel negative emotions, pain or shame, so we do all sorts of things to try to get rid of these feelings that we don’t want to experience.
I invite you to invite them in and be grateful for these heavy emotions and feelings. They are your own special gurus, showing up exactly at the right time to teach you what you need to ground you back to your Soul.
So, here’s my story, but I warn you, I’m super embarrassed and ashamed of it. It’s beyond stupid and extremely petty, and just thinking about it makes me feel like a schmuck.
But this is real life stuff that we stress over. Often the matter that occupies our minds are trivial, negative and makes no rational sense.
On that night where my mind was going in a million directions, I had to invite my jealousy and shame to learn from them.
I came across an old friend on instagram and she had 60,000+ followers. Instead of feeling happy for her, I immediately felt hot with jealousy and comparison. How did she go from having a few hundred followers to having 60,000 followers in 6 months? Yup, I warned ya, very petty.
After a range of emotions: jealousy, insecurity, judgement, comparison and guilt, then shame showed up at the end of my turbulent cycle in my mind to really stick it to me and make me feel like crap. Instead of being happy for her, I was upset. By. The. Number. Of. Followers?!…how small and unimportant! I was embarrassed for even feeling this way and wasting so much mental energy on a lame topic.
Shame beats us up and kicks our ass like no other. I felt shame for being so insecure and jealous. I felt like a loser for being upset about something so insignificant. I felt like a bad friend. A bad person. Comparing myself to her made me feel disappointed in myself. I felt like an ungrateful failure. I should know better than to feel so begrudging. More shame.
The truth is, her content is really good! She’s sharing knowledge about boundaries and parenting and she’s changing people’s lives for the better. In fact, you’ll get to meet Courtney Burg next week on the podcast. She’s amazing! (We even talk about my jealousy).
I tried to rationalize my feelings. I was proud of her and happy for her for success, so why was I so jealous at the same time? I didn’t want to feel this way.
We used to be really good friends and would talk about inspirational books we read or the latest Super Soul Sunday episode and how we wanted to be Oprah and influence the world.
She was doing it. I was not.
At least this was the story in my head.
Obviously, you’re here reading this, and I’m so grateful you’re with me this far. But that’s the silly thing about our mind. It can run wild and crazy with destructive, irrational thoughts. Have you been there too?
The harder I tried to push away the feelings, the louder they got.
I ping ponged this story and beat myself up until I looked at the clock and it was 3:45am! I had to be up in a few hours and had been on a hamster wheel replaying this story for 3 hours letting these toxic thoughts steel my sleep. I got sick the next morning.
So, how do we quiet the chatter when we’re in the middle of a boiling pot of emotions?
I had to get still. Even meditation didn’t help. The emotions were too intense. I channeled my dad who was my biggest advocate and gave the best guidance. I asked for an intervention in my chaotic mind.
When I finally connected to my breath and slowed down my heart, I heard his voice, “You’re exactly where you’re supposed to be. We all have gifts. Come from abundance and you’ll receive abundance.”
It was the perfect advice.
You have no control over your thoughts and emotions. They will come and go.
Instead of pushing them away, allow yourself to experience ALL emotions and thoughts. It’s how you react to them that matters. The good news is, this is under your control.
As a new mom, I think about how I’m going to talk to Hunter when she’s jealous of someone or when she feels bad about herself. Just like I would teach her, I’m also learning to treat myself with love, kindness and grace.
The way we would want to be treated, is also how we need to treat our emotions. Not something to be ashamed of, but see them with love, kindness and grace.
Here’s a simple way to sit with your emotions without letting them get the best of you. It’s simple, but not easy. It is a practice that has to be done constantly whenever you’re triggered. When you fall off (and you will because you’re human) and your emotions run away with you, come back to grace. You can always start again. That’s the practice.
- AWARENESS: Be aware of the emotion without getting caught in the drama. Come into the present moment by being present with your feelings. Refrain from Rumination. Put your hand on your heart and label the emotion you’re feeling. Usually your trigger is something to do with what you want or don’t want. Witness what you’re resisting.
- BREATHE: Breathe deeply for 5 intentional breaths and feel your heart.
- BE WITH THE EMOTION: Witness the sensation and hold space around it. Instead of letting the story boil with hot sensation, be in the simmer of the feelings. After a while of deep breathing, that sensation will soften. Even just sitting with it for a few seconds is a big win. Pema Chodron, author of Living Beautifully tells us to repeat, “This is my experience right now, and it’s okay.” Then go through into the next moment without any agenda.
I’m not proud of this story. It’s petty and embarrassing and I’m really ashamed of myself. But I share it with you to show you my scars, so we can heal together. All of our emotions are valid.
The work is to love your whole self and learn tools to become your highest self. When you fall out of alignment with your higher self, come back to grace instead of judgment.
You’re not supposed to be perfect. You are perfectly flawed and fabulous. You don’t have to become something you’re not. Just become more of yourself.
It’s all about coming back to this moment. In this moment you can change.
Welcome your emotions. All of your emotions, not just the ones you like. They are your personal gurus to help ground you back to your truth.
You are enough. You matter. You’re exactly where you’re supposed to be.