You know that feeling that comes with “What if….” and “ if only….”
What if I had listened better and gone to the suggested location?
If only I had walked back there after walking everywhere else.
Well, that’s what happened to me this week.
After 4 glorious days walking, swimming, snorkeling, and lounging along shores of Playas del Coco, my final adventure was to hop aboard a catamaran, sail out to sea, dive with the turtles, then take in the sunset with a margarita in hand. What a perfect way to end my stay.
But no…..I literally “missed the boat”.
After I signed up and paid my deposit, I failed to get clear directions about where to meet my group to get a ride out to the catamaran. I was early. I was searching. I was asking. However, I failed to go to the exact location that was suggested. And then I saw that catamaran heading out to sea without me.
Sadness set in. Disappoint was present.
I then asked myself , "What can I do release these undesirable emotions?"
Rather than suffer in sadness, I knew it was my responsibility (ability to respond) by calling upon the power of yoga to pull me up and out. Reminding myself that it’s times like these that give us the opportunity to choose joy over suffering, I proceeded to resolve my inner conflict.
First, I allowed that sadness to be felt. I dragged my feet through the sand, shoulders slumped, as I eyed that boat disappearing around the outer island – without me. (cue the violins)
However, I did avoid feeling mad or blaming the boat company or beating myself up for my own mistake. I found contentment in that fact as in the past I was quicker to anger and blame. It’s a common response of the ego that I bet you, too, have experienced. I credit Rasa Yoga – the yoga of emotions - for this perspective shift in the right direction.
Five minutes later I was tired of feeling sad, so I asked myself… “What now?”
There were now 4 hours to do whatever I wanted to do with my time.
Free time. Spaciousness. Options. Decision to Shift.
That all happened and my sadness was erased by replacing it with these more desirable emotions.
I also contacted another Catamaran company to set a later date at another location that will include my daughter and friends. (Love)
How well do you resolve your disappointments? Your sadness?
First step....acknowledge that emotions are simply feelings. They are not who you are.
Secondly... embrace the fact that you are an emotional creature with the ability to shift reactions into responses.
Rasa Yoga is the Yoga of Emotions listing 9 primary feelings that are experienced in different ways. There are a 1000's of ways that you can define what you are feeling. The practice of Rasa Yoga suggests that you explore, acknowledge and develop a healthy relationship with these 9 key emotions for the benefit of living in balance. This is called Rasa Sadhana.
RELEASE UNDESIRABLE EMOTIONS
EMBRACE DESIRABLE EMOTIONS
Love & Compassion
Out of these emotions, there is only one that has no benefit whatsoever. Can you guess which one?
Of course, the desirable ones are obvious. And then there are the undesirable.
Sadness. It’s very healthy to embrace our sadness when it comes to mourning a loss. Yet being immersed in depression (an offshoot of sadness) has detrimental effects over time.
Anger is an emotion that can help us set boundaries and clarify our values. It’s healthy to feel anger if it is not directed in an unhealthy way. Growling, stomping, punching a pillow can release that steamy feeling. The practice (rasa sadhana) is to explore the real reason you are feeling angry and resolve that issue. Most often anger develops from fear. Fear of missing out. Fear of being hurt. Fear of being misunderstood. The list goes on.
Fear has its place in helping to protect us from many things. But fear of that which has no basis in reality (fear of the dark, fear of the unknown, fear of judgement) will certainly lesson our quality of life.
Did you guess the one emotion that has no worthy benefit?
Disgust most often occurs due to a lack of compassion, whether for oneself or another or a situation. Rasa Sadhana suggests addressing this emotion first to absolve it.
As the Dalai Lama states in his book on Joy, “So much of your unhappiness originates within your own mind and body and how you react to events in your life.”
He reminds us that it is through self-inquiry and meditation that you can discover the true nature of your mind and learn to soothe your emotional reactions. This will leave you less vulnerable to destructive emotions and thought patterns that cause you, and those around you, to suffer.
As you master your emotions, you gain true control of your life and can live harmoniously in relationship with yourself and others, even if you “miss the boat.”