It came over me like a whisper, then I realized I was afraid. I felt that familiar flutter everywhere in my body, and I was uncomfortable. I watched the fear intently as it crawled into my mind, begging my thoughts to start spinning: “What is going on?? Why am I feeling like this? Maybe it’s because of that email I just got. Maybe something’s wrong. I want this to go away.”
I saw it all like a perfectly constructed scene in a film. This feeling was designed to make me suffer, formulated to pull my attention into the fear. I felt the barrier rising, disconnecting me from the world and the people around me. I saw how easily I could become absorbed in it.
The choice was so clear, obvious to me as the scene unfolded. I could jump into the anxiety and make it my reality. It would surely ruin my day. Who knows when it would end?
Or I could stay…unmoving…watchful…present. And that’s what I did.
I became aware of a vast, open, welcoming space in my being, and felt the sensations. I invited them in with so much tenderness, unafraid of what might happen. Every single one could be there as long as it wanted—I was there for it, standing as loving acceptance.
I felt relief deep in my body and beyond. I totally gave up fighting what was present. And I relaxed with it, into it. It was the reality of the moment, so who am I to resist it? I received it like a precious gift. Something in me just knew that this was the right way to be in this moment.
I wasn’t aware that things had shifted. Before I realized it, I was talking with friends, enjoying myself and fully engaged. The fear? It’s now just a memory that I’m sharing with you.
Although this experience changed quite quickly, it wasn’t always like that for me. I used to be loaded with fear and embroiled in a compulsive, fear-filled mind. But, over the years, I took each moment and made the sacred choice. The fear has now mostly subsided, but still, each time it appears is like the first time. I receive it fully. I welcome it like a homecoming.
If you’re stuck in any emotion that revisits you, try this. Drop the judgment, and forget the avoidance of it. These are stepping stones on the road to suffering.
Instead, stop. Breathe. Be loving, open space for this appearance in your body. Receive it like a gift, over and over.
Even the ones that have lived in you a long time, the ones that have caused you pain and brought your enjoyment of life to a halt. Welcome them in, too. Expect nothing, and you’ll be amazed at the ease that’s possible.
What happens when you’re simply present with your emotions, without the story? I’d love to hear… And if you’re reading this by email, please click here to comment.