What would happen if using mindful self compassion we gave ourselves complete and total permission to feel however we’re feeling right now in this moment?
I was just starting to feel like I’d gotten this whole “pandemic life” down pat.
I had defined my perfect daily routine after all: wake up at 7, go for a long walk, water my plants, take a shower, head upstairs to my office, get all my work done, play some guitar, relax on the couch with a book and a glass of wine, eat some dinner, hit the hay. Rinse and repeat.
And maybe it’s because I’m an introvert, or maybe it’s because I’m extra adaptable, or maybe it’s because I’m a little crazy – but in all honesty, spirits have been pretty high this summer. Sure I can’t do a lot of the things I love right now, but when it comes down to it I have everything I need, and SO much to be thankful for. So much.
Imagine my surprise, then, when the other morning I woke up feeling …. what exactly? It was hard to put my finger on it. Unsettled? Worried? Scared? Melancholy? Sad? Depressed? I felt profoundly different than I’d been feeling the past few months and I had no good reason for it that I could think of.
For the first part of my day, a battle ensued within me: one half of me insistent on feeling downright blue, and the other half insistent on turning it around. We gotta get happy again. We gotta figure out why we’re feeling so down. We gotta get back to how good we were feeling yesterday.
This inner-conflict went on for a good many hours until finally at around three in the afternoon, staring blankly at my computer screen, something dawned on me:
What if I give myself complete and total permission to feel how I’m feeling right now?
I pulled this feeling over me as I would a sweater in a dressing room, trying it on for size. And what happened? An ENORMOUS wave of relief washed over me. I felt peaceful, calm.
If a good friend came to you feeling sad, would you berate them for their feelings and tell them they’d better cheer up or else? Of course not – you would listen, ask questions, and just be with them. And if we can do this for ourselves with mindful self compassion – wake up each day, ask ourselves how we’re feeling, and accept wherever we’re at without judgment – it would allow us to navigate our moods and emotions (which are totally normal by the way) with a lot less pain.
So however you’re feeling today, whether it’s joyful or excited or worried or scared or sad, I’m here to say that you have 100% permission to feel that way. Look within yourself with acceptance and curiosity instead of criticism, and you may find you’ll start to feel better much sooner.
For more reading on self-care by Janelle (that’s me!) at Ellanyze, you might like these other quick reads: