My body has been holding heavy emotions as of late. It’s been a shock to my system as I haven’t experienced a deep sadness in a long while – so sometimes I start panicking trying to understand what’s normal sadness, and what is too much.
My biggest fear is sinking into self-destructive patterns, and I’ve been trying to avoid that at all costs.
In my earlier 20's, I probably would have locked myself in my room and done nothing or stay in bed, or find myself hopping into a rebound situation as soon as possible.
What’s helping me immensely this time around, is movement. Since I refuse to act on my emotions (sadness, grief, or longing), I find that I can only move my body and see what happens.
I don’t force myself to do heavy exercises since I’m in a fragile place – I try to listen to myself emotionally and mentally.
In what state am I? Where am I feeling it? In my chest, my head, my mind?
What can I do to accept this, but still execute in a way that doesn’t put me in a position to be triggered?
My solice and practice as a response to these questions have been the following:
- Play soft music in the background during work (I’m in a fortunate place to wfh, so I like to play a calming lofi playlist streaming on my tv)
- Take a walk or light jog during my lunch break. If jogging continuously feels difficult that day, I try to take breaks in between and take deep breaths.
- Coffee breaks in the late afternoon. I underestimated how much a warm latte from Starbucks can bring up my mood.
- After work, I go to the gym. Yep, movement again! Doesn’t matter what I do or how long – it boosts my serotonin levels to be in a different enviroment outside of my house, with other people around me. I usually hop on a treadmill and crank up the incline to get a more intense workout, paired with cool-down pilates after.
- I make myself a nourishing meal for dinner, my go-to being tilapia with orange veggies like boiled pumpkin, squash, and carrots (yum yum yum).
- I top off the night by writing or meditating, and watching a good show.
It’s hard to know what to do when experiencing sadness or difficult emotions, but movement and the above have helped me along on my path.