Surprise, embarrassment and disappointment are common feelings that cause people to shut down. Yet, your reaction in a heated discussion can make or break the relationship.
WANTING OTHERS TO CHANGE
Notice how when you feel uncomfortable you want to force situations (or people) to be different because you don’t like what’s going on. However, have you noticed that you can’t force others to change?
ACCEPTING THINGS AS THEY ARE
Mindfulness is about seeing things as they really are and being wise in how you respond to situations. It is not about fixing things. It is a way of being with yourself, and with everything around you.
LISTENING TO YOUR BODY
In my work with teens, I incorporate body-awareness techniques and breathing exercises. When teens are experiencing a particularly challenging time, I slow things down by asking them to focus on their breath, and describe what they are feeling in their body.
FEELINGS CARRY INFORMATION
Then we attempt to put a name on the feeling or feelings present. I take this opportunity to discuss how feelings carry information. By listening to their feelings, teens have a better opportunity to make choices on how they want to respond.
By entering into a place of curiosity about (instead of simply reacting to) your feelings, you can search for solutions to any challenges you are facing. Mindfulness is something you can practice every day, in every moment.
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