Share Pin Email
feature image
Live Free

How to Deal with Emotions That Arise During Meditation

It’s common for deep feelings to surface during contemplative practice. Here’s how to navigate the experience for growth and understanding.

0 127
Author Image
Contributing Writer
SHARE:

Whether you’re new to meditation or a seasoned practitioner, at some point emotions will inevitably show up during your practice making it challenging to stay in your quiet space. Not to fear, this is very common and there are ways to manage it. First, let’s take a look at why this is happens and then we’ll explore how best to handle the situation when it arises.

Emotions that come up during meditation represent one of two things: 1) undigested past negative emotions that are rising up to be processed, or 2) a present-moment experience of raw emotion from something happening now, which can be positive or negative. Either way, it can make for an uncomfortable meditation and is one of the most common reasons people stop meditating. (In my experience teaching meditation, the first stumbling block is the “I don’t have time” syndrome and second, “I can’t stop my thoughts so I must not be doing it right.”)

The mechanics of stress release in a meditation practice are simple and it helps to understand what is happening. As we settle into stillness and silence on a regular basis, we begin to access deeper layers of accumulated emotional toxicity, referred to as “ama” in Sanskrit. What many people don’t realize is that we store our emotions in both our physical body as well as our psyche. Emotions don’t just go away, although they do change form. Even after we have long since moved on from painful experiences of the past, the unresolved baggage is still anchored in our neurology and it will continue to surface until worked through.

So, how do we deal with emotions as they arise during meditation? The primary answer is simple, but it’s not necessarily easy: keep meditating. As emotions come up in meditation, do your best to be present with them. Really, feel into them and allow them to be as they are without judgment. See if you can identify the specific emotion. Is it anger? Sadness? Fear? Guilt? Shame? Notice if you can feel the emotion in a physical location within your body. Is there tension in your gut or tightness in your shoulders? Recognize that the emotion is a part of you and see if you can approach it from a place of loving compassion and inquiry, rather than running from it or stuffing it back down.

If the emotion is so strong that it becomes unbearable to sit with your eyes closed, simply come out of the meditation and then follow the same guidance as above. Allow the emotion to surface. Cry if you feel tears welling up. Crying is a form of release. Express the emotion in private to yourself. Self-expression is another way of taking the lid off and letting out some steam. You may find that doing some journaling around what is coming up can be a cathartic experience as well, and it may prove be a form of meditation for you as you navigate the temporary discomfort. When the intensity of the emotion dissipates, close your eyes and settle back into your meditation for whatever amount of time was still remaining. If you need support in this process, reach out to a coach or trusted teacher to help you navigate the process of emotional healing. Many coaches, including myself, offer one-on-one sessions via Skype if location is a concern.

Meditation enables us to be with ourselves physically, emotionally, mentally and spiritually. The purpose of meditation is to get to know ourselves at a much deeper level; to learn how past experiences and conditioning keep us in a perpetual state of suffering, and to recognize that we are not our thoughts or experiences. When we are operating from a place of witnessing awareness, we are better able to make conscious choices in our daily lives that lead to more joy, peace, happiness, and fulfillment.

By

SHARE:

Comments (0)

Load More

Find us on Instagram

@LIVESONIMA
  • This video was filmed during the last tour Sharathji taught in Miami, Florida. 
Watch the full video on our IGTV 🤩

We are so excited to host our teacher Paramaguru Sharath Jois with @miamilifecenter @eddiestern and @ashtangayogastanford :

Stanford, April 22-27 
Miami, May 1-7
NY, May 10-14 .

Practitioners from all over the world will travel and come together in mutual support of the Ashtanga Yoga path.

Don’t miss this unique opportunity to practice and learn with a true master of Ashtanga Yoga. 
To register follow the link in our bio.
. .
📽 Video from @miamilifecenter and @ifilmyoga 🙏🏽 .

@joisyogaencinitas 
#sharathjoisusa2019
#sharathjois #guruji
#sharathtour2019 #ashtangayoga #ashtangapractice #ashtangavinyasa #joisyoga #joisyogaencinitas #brooklynyogaclub #ashtangayoganewyork #ashtanganyc #ashtangayogastanford #sonima #livesonima #miamilifecenter #miamiashtanga
  • This video was filmed during the last tour with Paramaguru Sharath Jois in Miami during 2016. We hope you register to join him again this year!
  • “Your task is not to seek for love, but merely to seek and find all the barriers within yourself that you have built against it.”
—Rumi

Check the link in our bio to discover how meditation can help you love yourself and, in turn, naturally attract more love from others.
.
.
.
.
.
#loveislove #lovewins #valentinesday2019 #lovelovelove #yogawisdom #mindfulliving #sharathjoisusa2019
#sharathjois #guruji #ParamaguruSharathJois
#sharathtour2019 #ashtangayoga #ashtangapractice #joisyoga #joisyogaencinitas #brooklynyogaclub #ashtangayoganewyork #ashtanganyc #ashtangayogastanford #sonima #livesonima #miamilifecenter #miamiashtanga
#ashtangafamily #PrimarySeries #IntermediateSeries #ashtangacommunity #sharathjoisageless #livelove
  • Yoga truly has healing benefits. A combination of meditation and Ashtanga yoga helped 58-year-old Michael Fox find physical and emotional relief after a life-changing accident. 
See the link in our bio for his story.
.
.
@michael_ray_fox 🙏🏽🕉
  • Good News NY students! 
We have the venue for Paramaguru Sharath Jois’ classes in May: 
The Hill Center at St. Joseph’s College, 210 Vanderbilt Avenue, Brooklyn, NY.

Please make note: There has been a change of dates
May 10-14. 
If you have already registered for the six day program in NY you will be receiving an email in the next day to explain everything along with a full refund for the original purchase. 
We hope you will register for the new tour dates, which are now posted on our website! (Please find the link in our bio) .

If you are having complications because of pre-arranged travel plans, please send an email to: sharathjoisusa2019@sonima.com .

We very excited to be hosting @sharathjoisr with @eddiestern in this beautiful location in Brooklyn, NY! ♥️ We hope you will join us! .
.
@joisyogaencinitas @ashtangayogastanford @miamilifecenter .
.
.
.
#sharathjoisusa2019
#sharathjois #guruji #ParamaguruSharathJois
#sharathtour2019 #ashtangayoga #ashtangapractice #joisyoga #joisyogaencinitas #brooklynyogaclub #ashtangayoganewyork #ashtanganyc #ashtangayogastanford #sonima #livesonima #miamilifecenter #miamiashtanga
#ashtangafamily #PrimarySeries #IntermediateSeries #ashtangacommunity #sharathjoisageless
  • The California Ashtanga yoga students are getting excited about Paramaguru Sharath Jois' visit April 22 - 27! 
He will be teaching at Stanford University.
Be sure to reserve your spot on his U.S. Tour. 
See the link in our bio. .
.

Stanford, April 22 - 27
Miami, May 1 - 7
NYC, May 10 - 14
.
.
.
@joisyogaencinitas @miamilifecenter @eddiestern @livesonima @sharathjoisr @stanfordashtangayoga
.
.
Receive fresh content delivered to your inbox every week!