Take Your Feelings Along For The Ride – Living Fully with Anxiety

 

"Don't wait until everything is just right. It will never be perfect. There will always be challenges, obstacles and less than perfect conditions. So what. Get started now. With each step you take, you will grow stronger and stronger, more and more skilled, more and more self-confident and more and more successful." -         Mark Victor Hansen

 

To live and full and meaningful life it is very important to work with obstacles that are created internally (our thoughts and feelings). Feelings come and go and we can feel happy one moment as we watch the birds feeding at the birdfeeder in the garden then a few moments later feel anxiety as we notice that we have a pile of unpaid bills on the kitchen counter. Even attempting to feel differently about the unpaid bills does not change things; the fact is you feel the way you feel, whether anxious, frustrated, overwhelmed, exhausted or angry. It is both natural and normal to feel this way when you are experiencing some financial challenges.

Shoma Morita, the founding father of Morita Therapy says "Feelings change like the Japanese sky. Emotions are sometimes cloudy, sometimes sunny." Morita teaches that it is important to observe your feelings and thoughts, accept them, let them rise and fall, while you continue to take action and complete your task. Don't ignore your feelings; develop awareness without having to do anything about your internal feelings. Learn to be driven by purpose instead of your feelings, as your feelings can change in an instant, just like the clouds in the Japanese sky.

If your purpose is to go for a bike ride in the country this Saturday, then even if you have feelings of anxiety rising within you, you can take your thoughts and feelings along with you for the ride. The point isn't to shift the feeling but to ride your bike because that is what you want to do. The important thing is neither to control and suppress your thoughts or feelings nor act them out. Instead just allow your feelings to be there while you finish the action at hand. The key is awareness, if you remain conscious of the flow of feelings while still taking action, then you will not suppress them!

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