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Collection: Meditation - #9 Yongey Mingyur Rinpoche '4 Things We Can Do When We're Overwhelmed'



Hello, thank you Rinpoche. I was wondering when attending to the feeling in the body regarding a sensation.

Sometimes a feeling can be so strong that it overwhelms you and then even if it's anger or something... There's no way to stop it. What is the difference between being aware of it or being stuck – being aware of being stuck to it?


Okay, so although as I mentioned before, awareness is always there, never change. But for the practical level, we are not connected with awareness at the beginning. Although we have, but we are not connected with our own awareness. So we need to practice step by step, step by step, step by step.

So at the beginning when we have strong emotion then we cannot aware, we feel like overwhelmed. That's okay completely. So what we call, there are four techniques, kind of like four ways – not four ways – four approaches, maybe.

So the first is I already mentioned back to the sensation. There's emotion meditation also, but now sensation – back to the – before the emotion meditation, be aware of sensation is important. Without aware of sensation you cannot practice emotion meditation. So sensation – be aware of sensation now it's very important. So that's the first one what we call watch.

So there's four is watch, try something different, step back, take a break. Four things. So watch, you already know.

Second, if the emotions becomes overwhelm – the sensation too strong, heart [awe], empty, pain, hurt, unpleasant, cannot breathe, feeling like I'm going to die now, there's many feeling. So then you can stop. Then try something different, number 2.

Don't focus on sensation, listen to sound. Change your focus. Okay when you listen to sound feels better. Come back again [sensation]. Okay, overwhelm. Okay, stop. Listen to sound or watch your breath or even in the sensation in the body, don't watch the pain area, watch the numb area. Numb meaning maybe in the knees or hand or head or the neutral sensation. Neutral part of the body where there's a neutral sensation, you can aware of that. So this is the try something different.

Number 3, step back, meaning when I practice meditation with my panic, what I did is "Hey, panic get out I'm watching you," right? So that motivation or that aversion – fear, fear of panic. Sometimes what I call panic of panic is stronger than panic. And these are the behind supporting the panic, stay in the behind of the panic. So don't watch panic, watch the fear of panic or aversion or the resistance or the belief – there's some background belief. So that's step back, number 3.

And sometimes even you do that, doesn't work. Then take a break. Most easy one, you know, you all know how to do that, right? (Laughter)

You should take a break sometimes. Do some physical exercise, especial physical exercise is really good if you have a strong panic or depression or unhappy or too much emotion up and down, do physical exercise. And read books or sleep also – sometimes tired, exhausted, sleep. So take a break. So the four things.


[YAPSS Takeaway]

I think these 4 things not only works during meditation, but it can also apply when we faced a problem.

4 things we can do when we faced a problem;

  1. Watch - Confront the problem.

  2. Try Something Different - Try a different approach.

  3. Take a Step Back - Focus on your belief while solving the problem.

  4. Take a Break, but come back when you're fully recharged.

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