“I know it feels as though you will implode by sitting with uncomfortable emotions, but the only way is through it. Let’s do it like the bison do” ~ Jennifer Carey
This Shortcuts to Zen with Jen Episode #10 is significant to me for many reasons.
One reason is, it shows us that we can learn from Bison how to deal with difficult emotions. When there is a storm, the bison gets into a square posture and faces the storm. By doing that, they experience less pain and suffering and they are able to get through the storm. Instead of running away and finding shelter, they sit with the storm. In this series, we are focusing on mindfulness and emotions. Facing the storm is a lot like facing and sitting with your emotions.
Feeling the intensity of our emotions can be challenging sometimes. We want to do anything to not feel those emotions, so sometimes we will find ways to numb out and distract ourselves with food, alcohol, and drugs. You’ll learn that these won’t help you feel better, they will just prolong the pain because you’re not letting it pass naturally. When you get into the right posture and face your emotions like the bison, you will see that the uncomfortable feelings will eventually pass. You must be present with the storm that is happening.
Another reason this episode is so significant is that it shares a connection to a dear high school friend that did a fundraiser for suicide prevention. Suicide prevention is always something near and dear to my heart. That someone so precious in this life would be in so much pain and feel so alone in that moment, that they feel like the only answer is to take away their life as they know it.
I know we all experience dark times and they feel like they will never end. Please take a moment to learn from the Bison how to move through painful and uncomfortable emotions. The storm is temporary.