Pain and Being Present

This comes from a book about conscious parenting, but I find most the material is suitable and helpful for anyone.

“If we want [our children] to master their emotions, we have to teach them to surrender to what they are experiencing. This isn’t the same as getting sucked into our emotions or reacting. Surrender means we first accept whatever emotional state we are in. Thus we encourage our children to experience their feelings. We invite them to open a space and allow the pain already in them to have a presence in the room…..

When our children are permitted to feel their feelings, they are able to release them amazingly quickly. They come out of the pain understanding that pain is just another sensation. The anticipation of the pain is often more intolerable than the actual pain. When our children experience their pain in it’s pure form, without fueling it with resistance or coloring it with a reaction, the pain transforms itself into wisdom and perspective.

Once their emotions have been processed, children feel no need to hold onto them long after they have passed in the way adults tend to. They intuitively know that, like the ebb and flow of the ocean, pain comes in waves-and just as it comes, it also leaves. The reason we adults feel like it stays forever is that our thoughts have become embroiled in it based on a vestige from the past. It’s in the mind that the pain continues to exist, not in the actual situation. This is because we don’t let go….

…we seek to manage our pain by channeling it externally, which in the long run perpetuates it. The antidote is to sit with ourselves and become a witness to our pain, knowing well that the pain originates from our attachment to our ego.”

~Shefali Tsabary, PhD ; The Conscious Parent: Transforming ourselves, empowering our children.

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