Navigating Feelings and Thoughts

Windy wet start out there this morning. Dog curled up happy beside me. Nearly always open and happy she is, what a fine example of how to be.

Dealing with feelings and thoughts.

Dropping back into ‘aware space’, I have been doing that a lot recently. It’s been the only place I feel safe. I like to visualise that dropping back as a physical and felt action, falling backwards into it.

It’s similar to Michael Singer’s ‘leaning back’ inside approach which has worked well for me for dealing with strong disturbing reactions to something going on that I don’t like. I used to turn music to drown out the neighbour sounds so I didn’t have a disturbed reaction, and using this technique, I’m not longer annoyed at the footsteps of the neighbours above me.

I can lose that completely anytime though, and can choose to be annoyed again by simply entertaining the thought that ‘this shouldn’t be happening or ‘they shouldn’t be doing that’.

Instead I can just notice and allow the disturbed responses and feelings inside and allow them to churn away like a wild hurricane inside. I don’t add to it by allowing any thought story to come in, I just feel it and lean back inside a little while it is being experienced. These days I barely even notice the noises, and if I do it’s just neutral, like the wooshing of passing traffic.

So whatever is dancing in front or kicking a screaming inside, whatever is trying to hold attention hostage, just leaning back inside while experiencing it, something nearly magical happens. The disturbance dissolves. Not trying to change whatever feeling or occurrence is taking place – just falling back into aware space. The ground from which all the dancing and kicking and screaming seems to come from and disappear back into anyway.

I was lying in bed this morning, and the first few thoughts started arriving. Got up to make tea and noticed that a lot of the thoughts were thoughts advising me of possible threats lying ahead. And I could see how I can sometimes become afraid of my own thoughts and start generating scary thoughts about scary thoughts!

‘Oh no here comes another’

‘Oh-oh, what’s coming next?’

‘What awful scenario will it come up with that I haven’t already thought of ?’

By dropping back into aware space I see how they are substanceless without my investment in believing them. When I believe them I give them the power to capture my attention and negatively effect me by generating fear.

Mindfulness of these random continuous uncontrollable thoughts allows an uncoupling. I like to think of the mind as a radio tower picking up thoughts randomly. Not my responsibility that they arrive and I don’t have to even answer each one. Just notice and drop back into open space, notice and drop, notice and drop.

This cooperation is the ultimate ‘losing face’ for the ego. That’s what makes the turning away from the disturbing feelings and scary thoughts hard I think (until perhaps there’s enough courage of desperation to make it easier!). All these years of investment in building up a separate self, only to discover that a demolition job is next. That is the crux for me. Am I willing to allow and choose cooperation rather than resistance.

I can see that old biblical mythology as I write this of Lucifer….who saw himself as separate from God. Wonder if that’s what was meant by it.

Yesterday was a resting day. I relaxed here till meeting my friend S for lunch which was enjoyable. It was helpful having her there to talk things through, business and therapy wise. Then up the river with the dog, also lovely, a delight even. I lay down beside the river with the dog in silence in the dappled shade, took a few photos on the way back of flowers along the river. And then back here and binged a series. Just took some time out.

Today I have a therapy client shortly then will maybe visit the men on site with the plan for the next project. Maybe see if E is back from Germany for a walk.

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