Allowing The Dark In

Mindful Living Life Coach, Hilary Lowenstein photoMost of us are uncomfortable in the dark. When I say dark I mean feeling and experiencing conflict, sadness, anger, embarrassment, and setbacks.

I am uncomfortable in these dark feelings.

But I’m learning. I’m learning to allow myself to feel dark emotions and allow them to pass through me like drinking a large glass of water.

Our existence here on Earth is meant to be balanced with light and dark. If we didn’t know dark feelings and emotions we wouldn’t know what happiness feels like. If we didn’t know despair we wouldn’t know what gratitude feels like. And if we didn’t experience conflict we wouldn’t know peace.

So do you see that the dark, shadow side of ourselves is just as important as the lighter side?

It’s human instinct to push away darkness. Darkness is painful. We numb ourselves so we won’t feel the darkness. We medicate ourselves with addictions like: food, alcohol, shopping, gambling, and drugs. But we really are meant to allow it in.

The solution is to allow our dark emotions in and observe them. If we are able to allow the feeling of anger into our body and simply observe and not judge it, it will leave us as quickly as it came. What does anger feel like in your body?

Where humans mess up is when these dark emotions come in, we get attached to them. We judge the feelings and the people involved in them. We over analyze the “why me?” to exhaustion. Then those dark moments stick to us like glue and consume us for days, weeks, years.

But imagine if next time you feel sadness about something you were to sit quietly with your eyes closed and pay attention to how your body feels while you’re sad. Maybe you notice your throat tightens, your heart beats faster, your stomach is in knots, your breathing is shallow. You notice what your body is doing but you don’t over analyze why it is happening.

The unpleasant moments of life are crucial. And most importantly they leave behind a beautiful silver lining that is well worth the pain.

In Light,

Hilary of Hilary’s Mindful Living

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