Do any of these mental traps look familiar? My mindfulness practice has supported me in being more aware of mine.
Denial —> “I’m not feeling sad, it’s all fine.”
Pushing my feelings away —> “I don’t want to feel sad.”
Overanalyzing my thoughts —> “I’m sad because of A and B and C. Oh and D and E also.”
Trying to change what’s true —> “I’m going to override the sadness by X.”
Trying to figure things out —> “I guess the sadness is related to X and if I could remove Y, then I could solve problem Z and then I wouldn’t feel so sad.”
Not accepting feelings if they’re “negative” —> “Sadness isn’t a “good” feeling – I’d rather feel happy.”
Not feeling free to share my truth and feelings with others —> “How are you?” “Fine.” Meanwhile, inner dialogue: “I’m NOT fine. Here’s all the reasons I’m NOT fine.”
Overidentifying with emotions —> “I am sad. Sadness is me. I’ve always been a sad person.”
Mindfulness allows me to feel all my feelings (including sadness), acknowledge their existence in the present, accept them as a passing experience, and let them pass. My practice of mindfulness is an ongoing and continuous process to alleviate the pain and suffering caused by each of these mental traps. While the mental traps continue occurring, my practice supports me with tools to be free.