by Dr. Friedman (except where noted otherwise)
by Process | Topic
His Book | Meditations
For Life | The Flow of Money, Business
and Innovation | Transpersonal/Mind-Body
| Approaches, Worldview and Will-isms
For Life: The Core Playing Field
| Free the Ego, and You Are Free
| Feeling, Thought, Communication & Action
For Life: The Core Playing Field
| Free the Ego, and You Are Free
Stories/Metaphors For Life: The
Core Playing Field | Free the Ego, and You Are Free
| The Way It Is
Family Gatherings | Cartoons, Jokes
and Humor | Poems and Quotes
| Song Lyrics, Wit and Wisdom
© 2011 by Will Joel
Friedman, Ph.D. All Rights Reserved Worldwide.
thoughts create the context which determines our feelings."
J. Langer, Mindfulness
A healthy feeling life, including as
expressed in healthy relationships, is a defining characteristic of psychologically
healthy people. Beyond knowing and living the realistic purposes of feelings,
I suggest these individuals harmoniously work with their feelings in a six-stage
process that simultaneously helps our minds get out of the way.
Listen and recognize: You begin to attend to your body and notice a feeling stirring
from within. Your heart and guts are open to experience this bodily feedback as
you focus attention on this bodily feedback. Without resistance and setting aside
any past assumptions, interpretations and evaluations, you consciously listen
inside, putting the cues and clues together to form a credible picture of what
feelings are being sent you. Naming the feeling feedback is now available and
can be helpful in making feeling sense of them. Realizing that you may be having
several different feelings that don't exactly mesh well or are incongruentmixed
feelingsyou identify each one for just what it is. This process takes some
time since feelings are biochemical, that is, usually slow.
acceptance with an affirmative attitude: You consciously acknowledge feeling exactly
as you do. You face and allow all that arises to be exactly as it is. You bring
your awareness to notice any resistance, dismissal, rationalization, avoidance,
denial or trying to change it, and choose to accept this urge or movement as well
as consciously surrender it as blocking sheer acceptance of feelings. You can
now bring an intention and readiness to meet, welcome and engage with these feelings.
An affirmative attitude is present in knowing that this healthy feeling processing
powerfully supports growth and development. The acceptance of any feelings is
a tolerance for bearing this affect within you. The capacity for "affect tolerance"
is at the heart of welcoming all your body is feeling within an affirmative, growth-oriented
attitude. Sheer acceptance and befriending of feelings is seeing the feeling you
feel is a here-and-now experience and giving it acknowledgement for simply being
present exactly as it innocently, pristinely is.
Demont Otis The Surf
- A present-tense intention and vision to fully feel,
constructively express and receive all the messages within these feelings as you
engage in this processing: You bring a clear-eyed commitment to healthy feeling
processing, consciously choosing to allow these feelings to move, vibrate and
percolate all the way through you. You bring an intention to be, feel and constructively
express whatever you feel through your body to a natural completion. You "take
the stand" to helpfully release the bodily energy and distill the communication
within this feeling experiencing, all without turning this into an agenda, position,
belief, story, role, identity, action plan or willful goal. Curiosity and excitement
regularly are present in this process.
expression and resonation of the feeling: You actively feel and express whatever
you feel to what degree you are willing and capable, and it is fitting and productive.
Engaging channels for processing through feelings include physical and creative
activities as well as interpersonal and spiritual connection. You are willing
to stay within this process, and even return to it later, until there is little
or no emotional charge or feeling energy on it. When there is no longer any energy
on the feeling you know that it has come to a natural completion. You are riding
inside gently resonating with these feelings, much like a surfer deftly rides
a wave. The emotional waves break, sometimes several times, and dissipate until
there is nothing left.
Observe any unhelpful influence by your conditioned
mind in converting a feeling into a mood or emotion through your ego getting stuck
in feeding the feeling with thoughts, beliefs and narrative stories. You consciously
let go of any emotionally triggering "hot thoughts," like "I was cheated, how
unfair" and "How stupid" as well as "Now my life is complete" and "I've got the
world by the tail" because each will only fuel the emotional fires you wish to
complete and naturally dissolve. If this occurs, then acknowledge this being here;
notice when and under what conditions you experienced this mood or emotion before,
and willingly release and surrender it and let it go over and over and over again.
acceptance, releasing emotional energy and triggering thoughts: You actively bring
your attention and awareness to reflecting and contemplating upon the feeling
experience as you observe as any remaining emotional charge and gratefully let
go. How this experience occurs for people is often in a deepening calmness, relaxation
and empathy of what the underlying feeling was honestly communicating. Feelings
as registered in bodies speak directly and literally to us. It is for us to be
with, befriend, "stand under" and honestly decode their messages. We most accurately
receive any feeling communication when we are open, willing and receptive to pause,
then listen, reflect and intuit the inherent messages inside this bodily feedback.
emotional growth, compassionate understanding and maturity comes with seeing feelings
in context and with perspective: At this stage the feeling or emotion is relatively
complete in terms of emotional vibration, resonance and expression. Possibly you
have uplifted an emotion into an ennobling sentiment by an opening of your heart
in genuine compassion, kindness and wisdom. Possibly you have seen through misunderstandings
and taking anything personally in those circumstances to open up an inner space
for discernment and self-compassion.
George Demont Otis
coming through processing feelings to completion, is transformative, curative
and healing. This may show up as a turning of hesitant anxiety into assertive
courage, churning resentful anger into deepening acceptance and feeling with another's
suffering, rash impulsivity into restraint and thoughtful moderation. Our feelings
and our ways of thinking of them are now present in Truth and wisdom within us.
You can reflect upon the journey and glean the emotional growth and understanding,
the seeds of truth inside this experience.
in context or with perspective is to "stand under" the feeling experience within
the specific context it appears in. Now you can begin to notice all the depth
and breadth of purposefulness in the feeling communication. This is further broadened
from your primary relationship, family and work to similar patterns in your trans-generational
family, community, country and world. Without a context, everything gets distorted,
jumbled and misperceived; in a multi-layered context or perspective, everything
is connected in a clarity of seeing and a direction that is now self-evident.
The growth opportunity is more fully realized when the feeling messages are seen
in ever larger social contexts, taken into engaged social action and activism,
and offered as a human gift and spiritual support by being of loving service and
genuine help to others.
Copyright 2013 by Will Joel Friedman, Ph.D.