Untangling from Dark Emotions

Happy, sad, angry, scared, worried, hurt, jealous, frustrated...to be human is to have a plethora of emotions -sometimes in just one hour!  Our feelings, our thoughts, the sensations in our bodies can come and go like clouds in the sky.  And other times, they can feel big, heavy and sticky.  What can we do then?

One approach is to look carefully at the language that we use when describing a feeling.  Instead of thinking or saying, "I am sad.  I am angry.  I am frightened.", we can change it to, "I feel sad.  I feel angry.  I feel frightened."  When we use the words, "I am", to describe a feeling state, we are treating the emotion like a thing that defines who we are and allowing the emotion to become the subject, the me.  By using the phrase, "I feel or I have", we separate ourselves as subject and our emotions as objects.  "I have sadness, but I am not sadness.  I feel anger, but I am not my anger."  

The same can be said for thoughts.  "I have worried thoughts, but I am not my thoughts.".    We can see that we are not our thoughts because another part of us is able to experience and witness the thoughts and feelings that we have. When we are able to create some space, some distance and see the thought or feeling in an objective way, it can help us to disengage with and let go of the negative state or at least to shrink it and see it from a different perspective.  We can work with it, as opposed to being completely overwhelmed by it.