Meditation Mondays: Releasing Anger
Do you ever feel so overwhelmed, frustrated, angry, etc. that you want to have a blow out tantrum, throw things, punch something, scream, or cry? You're not the only one.
Life is really challenging sometimes! Things are thrown at us every single day that we can't control. Even when you have a routine meditation or calming practice and have worked out all your old "stuff," you can still be thrown off course. Not only is it totally normal to feel a little rage sometimes, but it can also be really healthy.
Too often, people in the yoga or wellness industry tell you to just be positive all the time (and I'll admit I've even been guilty of that in the past), but that's counter productive. And while mantras and intentions are amazing and incredibly effective, when you're at the height of frustration or depression, "I am bliss" might not cut it. Pretending like everything is fine when it isn't, or dismissing REAL feelings that you're having will, in pretty much every instance, create a deeper problem only to show up later.
Now granted you don’t want to stay in that dark place too long as it's neither productive nor any fun; for you or anyone that loves you or has to work with you (side gratitude to the people that love and put up with us all). Just like anything, in order to conquer it, you have to look at it. Is it really about something happening in the present or did something in the present trigger something from the past that has nothing to do with now? I think we can all agree, it's usually the latter. You must get radically honest with yourself about what's going on and how it's affecting your energy and emotions. So if you're pissed, be pissed. If you're sad, feel sad. But have ways to get out that don't feel like forcing yourself to be cupcakes and rainbows if that's clearly not the case. The key is to move out of it as quickly as we can, AUTHENTICALLY.
A couple tools I use regularly when I feel off:
I focus on how I WANT to feel. "I want to feel happy" or "I wish I could just feel more relaxed about this situation" or "I want to feel more love and compassion towards this person." Find the words that make sense for you.
Learned from my teacher Gabrielle Bernstein, I ask myself these questions: 1. How do I feel right now? (Anxious, stressed, insecure, fearful, unworthy, in judgement, angry, overwhelmed, etc.) 2. Am I willing to be happy? (Get real with yourself here, do you WANT to be happy? It's okay that you don't actually feel happy in this moment, but understand that just having the desire to feel better can create a massive shift in your energy) 3. Am I willing to let this go? (Again, you don't have to be ready in this moment to let go of something, but if you are willing you have taken a major step towards healing. Part of what keeps most of us stuck is our subconscious unwillingness to let things go. We so want to be right and hold on to old stuff, but ultimately, wouldn't you rather be happy????)
The end goal is to feel better. Think about how much time and energy we waste all caught up in negative feelings. If we could feel what we need, but move out of it sooner, then we have more time to enjoy life and the people we love, and we have more energy to show up, create and serve the world around us. This week's meditation is a physical way to clear out what's keeping us stuck. I've been doing this every day for about 2 weeks and plan on continuing as my own little 40 day experiment to see what happens…already I feel a major shift and clearing in my thoughts and energy.
"Fists of Anger detoxes the pent-up energy of frustration and self-hatred that’s inside most people on the planet. That anger actually prevents all the blessings from coming to you, so you need to release it for the prosperity to have more flow. This breath also releases such a current of radiance that the nerves start to be able to conduct more wattage. Your capacity widens, your energy clears, and your grit develops." - Guru Jagat, Invincible Living
Tuning in: Either sit on the floor in a cross legged position (easy pose) or if that's too uncomfortable for you simply sit in a chair with both feet on the floor with a straightened spine. Rub the palms of your hands together vigorously for a few moments, eyes closed, rolled up and in, focusing in between your eyebrows, or third eye (your pineal gland), place your palms together in a prayer pose at your heart's center, elbows out.
We tune in before meditations with the Adi Mantra, the mantra for protection and connection to the wisdom of universe and all that have come before us. It is chanted but can be said or read to yourself or out loud.
Take a deep breath in, hold for a moment, then release it. Take another deep breath in for the Adi Mantra. You'll say it (or think it) 3x: "Ong Namo Guru Dev (sounds like "Dave") Namo" which means I bow to the inner wisdom within.
Set the intention to heal.
Sitting in easy pose, stretch your thumbs over to the fleshy pads of your palm right below your pinky fingers (if it doesn't reach all the way that's okay just do your best), close the rest of your fingers over the thumb making a fist.
Keep your eyes closed and gently focused up between the brows.
Breath: You'll do a strong and powerful Breath of Fire (even inhale and exhale; making sure that on the inhale your diaghram extends, & on the exhale your diaghram contracts) through an open O-shaped mouth (your cheeks will most likely billow in and out).
Movement: As if you're doing a backstroke, you'll alternate each arm overhead making sure your fists are actually going above your head and not to the sides.
The breath and movement will naturally coordinate and sync up.
Continue the breath and movement for 3 minutes while thinking about anything that's frustrating you (get angry!).
To end: Inhale, hold the breath, interlace your fingers, and stretch your arms up with your palms facing the ceiling. Picture yourself surrounded with white light. Exhale but keep your arms stretched up. Repeat two more times inhaling, holding the breath as you stretch and imagine yourself surrounded by the white light. Exhale and relax.
*If you are pregnant or menstruating do a long deep breath instead.
Try this for 40 days as your own personal experiment.
With Love & Gratitude,
"You don’t need an enemy, you are your own enemy. Nobody can bother you, you bother yourself." -Yogi Bhajan