What To Do When You're Out of Words
When someone falls down, what do you do? What do you say?
A growing issue in the yoga community is our reactions to life's ups and downs. Many believe that a positive attitude will out weigh the struggle of the experience and that will help you find happiness in the moment.
But what about when that doesn't work? How do we respond to our mental states and how do we help others through this difficult time?
1 | We don't need saving
When someone I know is having a bad day, my immediate reaction is to hug them. TO try and make it all better and to comfort them.
But what if I told you that hugging someone to "comfort" them was really my way of expressing my discomfort with the situation?
When someone is experiencing suffering, loss, hatred, etc. they don't need someone to step in and save them. They need someone who will meet them on their level - literally throw themselves down into the same situation to try and understand their suffering.
2 | Fully provide your attention
Most people are not looking for you to solve all of their problems, nor should you if they ask.
Majority of our daily suffering in life is unnecessary. We tend to hold on to anger, depression, sadness, hate, etc. because our sense of self is involved into that mental state.
When we begin to practice observing the mental states and fluctuations, we no longer provide them power over our mood, or our lives.
If you are faced with a situation, fully give your attention to the person, or mental state, and observe their process. Listen and observe without trying to respond, solve, or relate to the experience.
3 | Ask clarifying questions
If you, or someone, are looking for advice on the situation, ask questions to help bring more clarity into the process.
For instance, if my friend is speaking about a constant struggle with her job and how she is treated - I may ask "why do you allow that treatment?" This brings the person away from the experience and emotion of the situation and more inwards; accepting responsibility.
4 | Practice mindfulness meditation
If you are not already practicing mindfulness meditation, you should seriously consider it. Mindfulness meditation is a process of getting to know your mind and turning it into an ally.
Mindfulness meditation teaches us that we don't want to turn off our thoughts, because they are here to teach us something. The process of our thoughts can provide us great insight into our behaviors and mental fluctuations.
Helping yourself, or someone you know, through suffering can be quite the job. It's important to take care of yourself and make sure that you are up for any possibility or outcome.
One of the best things we can do for ourselves is find space to let down our walls and filters. Check out our Camp Yogi retreat for more details on a weekend where you have the opportunity to do this and build community through it.