Instead of pushing your emotions away, if you can notice them and understand them without any rush to judge or react to them, you will find that you are starting to experience less stress and anxiety. It's like taking a calm step back and seeing the bigger picture whenever emotions bubble up rather than getting swept up in the storm. This practice doesn't mean we become cold or indifferent. Instead, it helps us respond to life with a clearer mind and a balanced heart, making navigating through both good and bad times so much easier. Through practices like meditation and self-compassion, we learn to sail smoothly on life's ocean, no matter how choppy the waters get.
The STOP Practice:
S - Stop:
- Whenever you find yourself in a challenging situation or feeling a rush of emotions, just pause for a moment.
T - Take a Breath:
- Take a deep breath in, then slowly exhale. This brief moment will help to calm the initial rush of emotions.
O - Observe:
- Notice what is happening in and around you. What emotions are you feeling? What thoughts are crossing your mind? What physical sensations are you experiencing? Just notice without trying to change anything.
P - Proceed:
- Now, continue with whatever you were doing, but with a newfound awareness. Try to respond to the situation rather than reacting impulsively.
This simple STOP practice can be a reminder throughout your day to cultivate Nonjudgmental Awareness, allowing you to engage with your environment mindfully. By practising this routinely, you’ll find it becomes second nature to approach situations with a calmer, clearer perspective.
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