July 25, 2013 at 3:06 pm #39207AnonymousInactiveJuly 25, 2013 at 4:54 pm #39209MattParticipant
I’m sorry for the distress you feel, and the worrisome thoughts that arise from the feeling. You’re a lot more normal than you expect, isn’t it funny how we can worry that we worry too much? And then we worry we’re worrying about worrying too much. Whew! How crazy are we to use our time in such a way! A few things came to heart as I read your words. Have hope, there is always a path to peace.
It may be helpful to split your experiences into two different entities. First is the emotion of fear, which is that tremulous feeling in your chest… sometimes like a tight squeeze where a fat grumpy man is sitting on you. The second are the thoughts in your head, like a canary on your shoulder chirping in your ear and producing images and situations that would be painful to go through.
The canary and the fat man are good friends. When the canary is hungry, she calls to the fat man to come give her food. The fat man really enjoys the bird’s song, and dances to the tune. Round and round they play, and your poor body is their playground.
The first thing in unraveling the relationship between them is accepting they’re there, but they aren’t “you”. They are inside you, and they play their games inside you, but they don’t have to… you have the ability to talk to them and ask them to play a different game. But, the fat man wants to hear a song, and the canary wants food… so we take control and decide what song and what food.
The fat man gets a diet of sitting meditation. Ajahn Jayasaro has a great video called counting breath meditation on YouTube. Its good to be proactive and practice when you’re not feeling sat on, but it also works during the feeling of squeeze. Just notice the feeling and breathe in. 1. Breathe out. 1. If the canary sings, just say to it “I’ve got this” and gently move back to counting. If you follow the instructions by jayasaro, the emotions will settle after a few journeys from 1-10. As a side note, the feeling of fear in the chest is chemical in nature, and I read somewhere that the chemicals are taken back into the axons in 90 seconds once the canary stops singing “danger danger”.
Now, to help the canary sing a new song there are a few things to try. The first is a metta practice, (YouTube “jayasaro metta”) which helps a lot for agitation. What metta will do is put a little restraint on the canary, so it doesn’t go nuts every time it sees something you love. Said differently, the mind spins into cycles of fearful thoughts when you see a trigger, real or imagined, where something you love seems threatened.
Another thing that might help is to see that the canary is actually your creativity out of control. Perhaps you are an artist who hasn’t found your medium, or had someone you respected criticize your art… so you stopped creating. It may help to dust off those old drawing pads or journals, or clay or guitar or microphone. Whatever it is that you used to do that don’t anymore, or, if you’ve not really ever tried, time to explore! The canary needs to sing, and if you help her learn a different tune, she won’t call to the fast man. 🙂 Said differently, when an artist suppresses her art, her mind creates and creates anyway.
One last thing. As the fat man gets some better food, loses some weight, and gains a little bit of a more flexible frame, he changes. Gender, for starters. The fat man dissolves into a fertile goddess, because all he really is is a reflection of your love against the unknown future. Said differently, your powerful loving heart bounces against millions of fantasy futures… and the vibration produced is fear.
Have faith, because as we walk our path toward peace of mind and body, we feel a lot better. Like, lots and lots and lots better. Not only do we feel better in the moment, but if something crappy does happen, we not only do not get swept into the flood, but we can help our loved ones stay afloat as well. Its a win-win, and I know you’re powerful enough to do just that… because your love and worry are actually shades of the same energy. Namaste, dear sister!
MattJuly 25, 2013 at 10:47 pm #39225KrisParticipant
Without a long statement, maybe you could try learning about attachment theory in adult relationships. Particularly avoidant attachment style. Just sayin.July 26, 2013 at 8:02 am #39236MattParticipant
Your brief description seems well intentioned but unskillfully aimed. Does it seem like her fear of rejection leads toward apathetic behaviors? Rebecca, does that sound right? If not, don’t add it to the list of things you worry about. 🙂
MattJuly 28, 2013 at 12:24 am #39291KrisParticipant
I didn’t mean to create any worry, only food for thought. No harm intended