Often, we are quick to anger when things don’t go as planned. We are irritated by interruptions. We place blame on someone, whether ourselves or someone else. We tense up. We freak out. We yell. We hurt.
Life is mistakes and interruptions and chaos. We can either fight it and continue to hurt, or learn to let go. Sure, it can be frustrating or sad or disappointing. But what is life without the bliss AND the pain? The tears of joy and the tears of grief? It is not good or bad. It just is.
I encourage you the next time you start to feel upset, to notice what is going on in your mind. Are you catastrophizing an event—making it a bigger deal than it is? What emotions do you feel, without a label of “good” or “bad”? How does that emotion affect you physically? Shoulders tense? Jaw clenched? Can you soften around the discomfort without trying to change it or push it away?
You are human and it’s OK to be upset. But if we can start to notice the feelings, really paying attention to them, we can use that to learn how to respond in such a way that begins to cultivate compassion within yourself, to others, and in the world. Instead of just reacting and perpetuating stress, depression, and anxiety, listen to yourself. Listen to what your body and mind are telling you and respond to yourself with kindness. You are amazing, and you are worth your own compassion.