When we are in pain, whether it is emotional or physical, anger and fear simply fuel the pain. In order to shift into a new position, in this case, a place of less pain, we must allow ourselves to be in the present and accept what the present moment is giving us. It may sound counterintuitive, but to breathe and allow yourself to fully feel what is happening within you is the path to allowing it to shift.
I have had much experience with this in my own life, certainly on an emotional level and most recently on a physical level. And the principle is the same. I have recently gone through a two year period of undiagnosed pain. Many doctor visits, much money and many tests later my doctor’s frustration led him to ask me to go on prozac for a third time. And although I believe the mind and body are connected, I did not believe that an anti-depressant was going to address my physical symptoms. So I worked with my body as I have learned to work with my emotions. And that is, I accepted my state of being without fear or judgment. This took a lot of work in meditation and in comforting my internal state of fear about what was happening to my body, but I was able to relax my fear. I was able to allow my body to be where it was without anger, fear or judgment. And from this place, I was able to allow it to shift. From this place of acceptance and listening to my body, I was able to shift the pain (as well as other physical symptoms). And this experience is just one example of how important it is to start where you are.
Most often I am working with others on an emotional level, and so many people defend against what the present moment is bringing. In our defensive position we often hold the breath, put up a wall and clench the body without even being aware of it. And this is what keeps the pain firmly in place and sometimes exacerbates it. It is the acceptance of the pain, allowing ourselves to fully feel it that brings movement so that it may shift.
Many of us, myself included in my younger years, are so fearful of our feelings. We believe we cannot survive them. If we open the floodgates we will never stop crying, “the pain will never stop, it’s been so long I can’t start now, if I let the door open the pain will just get bigger,” are some of the reasons I hear for stopping the flow of emotions within. But we can survive, we can allow for the deepest of pain to move through us and as we do this it will move on and we can then shift into that easier place we have been holding our breath and praying for. So, for today, answer your own prayer, breathe and allow yourself to feel what ever you have been avoiding and see what happens.