Some days you might feel flat or depressed, restless or anxious.
I’ve spent days, weeks and even months in states of depression and anxiety.
I wanted to change the way I felt so I tried pushing those feelings away.
I tried to force myself to be happy, to put on a smile, but it didn’t work.
Some days I just let my mental health issues consume me, allowing wave after wave of emotion to keep me down.
And I don’t think anyone wants to feel this way.
I certainly didn’t.
But sometimes you do and that’s OK.
It’s OK to be flat or depressed, restless or anxious.
It’s OK to not be OK.
EMBRACE NOT BEING OK
Imagine these negative experiences are a cloudy day and what you really want is sunshine and blue sky.
But instead of wanting the clouds to go away and wishing for the sunshine and blue sky to arrive, meditation can help you to accept that right now it’s a cloudy day.
And that experiencing a cloudy day is OK, because we know that later on, tomorrow or at some point in the future the sun will shine and the blue sky will return.
Meditation can help you become OK with these cloudy days and give you the inner strength to sit with it.
To allow the cloudy day the time and space to pass naturally, without wishing for the blue sky to return or wanting the clouds to go away.
MY CLOUDY DAYS
Even after years of practicing meditation I still have cloudy days from time to time.
Times where I’ve spent a few weeks under a dark cloud with my usual smiley self seemingly nowhere to be seen.
Perhaps it’s off on holiday getting some sunshine!
But thanks to my meditation practice, I’ve changed my perspective on how I choose to experience these days.
So instead of wanting the experience to change, I allow myself to be with the experience without any need to control it or change it.
So rather than allowing myself to caught up in it like I used to, I’m aware that the cloudy day is here and I do my best to carry on with my life and be OK with not being OK.
Trusting that the experience will naturally pass with time.
MEDITATION CAN HELP YOU
In meditation we learn to train the mind to experience thoughts and feelings without getting attached to them.
When thoughts and feelings arise we notice they are there, but we allow them to arise and drift away just like clouds floating along in the sky.
When we start to view our thoughts and feelings like clouds passing in the sky, we can start to change our relationship to them because we trained ourselves to let them arise and pass without getting attached to them.
And this will help you when you experience a cloudy day in your daily life because you learn to accept that right now it’s a cloudy day.
That right now you’re experiencing negative thoughts and emotions.
So meditation can help you in daily life by teaching you to view your thoughts and feelings with a different perspective.
Teaching you to be with an experience as it is, not how you would like it to be.
Teaching you that with time the experience will pass, so you can learn to be OK when you’re not OK.
You are the blue sky and sunshine. Everything else is just the weather.Pema Chodron