Sitting With Uncomfortable Emotions

At times fear, anxiety, depression and other unpleasant emotions can feel like a small child demanding our attention. A child will yell, throw a tantrum and keep behaving badly, all in an attempt to get our undivided attention. So will difficult emotions. And as you know, trying to ignore a child or your emotions, or pretend that they’re not getting to you, will make them both become even more intense.
Just as with a child, the best way to ease intense feelings is with love. Imagine that the child in your care is having a tantrum. Imagine getting down to their level, looking deeply into their eyes and calmly and quietly saying: I’m here for you. You are part of me, I love you and I am here for you. It may take a few minutes but by allowing yourself to connect with them heart to heart, you’re helping them to feel heard. That is exactly what’s happening when you’re experiencing difficult emotions. There’s a part of you demanding to be heard and it won’t be silenced by ignoring it. When you’re dealing with uncomfortable emotions try saying the same thing to yourself: I’m here for you. You are part of me, I love you and I am here for you. 
When you acknowledge and accept the truth of what you’re feeling the alienated part of you will feel heard and you will feel its  intensity begin to ease. This meditation may be helpful. You can substitute whatever difficult emotion that you’re experiencing for the word anxiety.

A Meditation On Anxiety

I open every cell in my being
beneath the anxiety.
Not to ignore
Not to pretend
anxiety doesn’t exist.
But to
my experience
let it be.
And when I’m ready I ask:
What are you here to
teach me?


  1. breathe in. breathe out. Repeat as necessary to evacuate the negative emotions.

  2. We try to ignore or suppress painful emotions and make them go away, but that doesn’t work. Ever. Even if we distract ourselves temporarily, the feelings come back stronger.
    Thank you, Victoria, for encouraging us to meet unwelcome emotions with love. I appreciate the specific suggestions on how to do that.

  3. If we sit with our feelings that have been there for decades, I wonder if they ever go away. Curious!

  4. Another amazing article. The problem is most people do not want to deal with these feeling and run from them. If, we were taught at a young age to deal with them and there is nothing wrong with having these types of feelings. People would be better adjusted.

    • Yes, Brenda. We’ve been programmed with wrong ideas about feelings for so long that it’s difficult to see that we have the power to change.

  5. It feels so good to acknowledge emotions like fear. People tell us to ignore it and it will go away, but that doesn’t feel healthy to me. I’d rather feel the fear and work to get past the way that it limits me than to ignore it.

  6. Love this, Victoria. It’s speaking to me. I’m having those uncomfortable feelings today.

    • Uncomfortable feelings can be so hard. Before I do the meditation, I remind myself that all feelings are temporary. That helps too.

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