Post #73: something haunting you that you did or said? 11 minute yoga vignette to curb cravings and release guilt and shame
Have you ever had something that you “said” or “did” haunt you deep inside and you want to cover it up so that you don’t have to face the guilt, shame or other uneasy emotions? Most of us have something that we feel guilty or shameful about and would like to bury it in the ground. But not facing these behaviors in ourselves and admitting (at least to ourselves) that we were wrong, will wreak havoc on us until we can face the music.
The cravings we reach for when this is happening are meant to suppress the emotions deep down in the lower belly. This area of the body is considered the emotional center in many traditions. That’s why food is such a good one to “stuff” down these emotions so that we no longer have to feel them.
If someone has serious addictions then they need all the resources and support they can get through programs that are built for that. But for some of us that are not considered typical addicts we can still fall into a similar category and find ourselves in this guilt-stuff-forget craving cycle.
This yoga vignette is a good one for you if you know there is something bothering you and you don’t know how to let it go or fix it. It deals specifically with the lower abdominal area and forces us to “feel” what’s going on in there and face the music. You may cry or get angry or frustrated during this sequence. The important thing is that you allow yourself to “feel” whatever emotions that come up so that you don’t continue to “stuff” them down into oblivion. Because trust me, I know from experience that those emotions will come right back up more potent and sharp than ever and explode right over some poor soul standing next to you that just happened to trigger the wrong button. Yikes!
This is not a time to blame yourself and get more angry or shameful toward yourself. ARE YOU HUMAN? THEN IT’S GOING TO HAPPEN FROM TIME TO TIME. The important thing is that we face what’s going on inside because it is then that we recognize what we need to do to remedy our situation. Maybe we need to apologize to someone. Maybe we need to forgive ourselves. Maybe a good ole cry is what we need to just move out some old, deeply held emotions. Whatever the case may be, you can bet that you will “feel” lighter after this practice.
Before you begin, set an intention to “feel” any emotions and feelings that come up and release them through continuous breathing as you move through the practice. You can pause the practice at any time if you need to cry. Remember, I spent the first 2 years of my practice in tears because I had so much pent up emotional energy from childhood that had never been released.
Most importantly, be kind to yourself as you navigate this work. Yoga calls it radical self-acceptance. As we continue to do this work we find ourselves more and more in radical self-acceptance which nullifies guilt and shame and sets us up for more kindness toward ourselves and others.
Remember, you are a force for good in the world. The more consistent you get with these practices the more your life will become guided, sacred, and filled with meaning. You cannot help but then extend deep peace, joy, and contentment to your loved ones, friends, and everyone you meet. The world could use more of this, so let’s get you in the best space to make it happen.