View this post on Instagram
I live by the sea.
Always have. Always will.
Although I prefer the land and I don’t actually like surfing or water sports, I have always lived by and need to be near the sea.
When I wrote this meditation, I had in mind all the amazing people around me who love the sea and are suffering with not being able to control their emotions very well. It’s not an easy feat; we all get so caught up in the moment.
If you are someone who has a short fuse or you’re young and you’re not sure why you have all these feelings and where they are coming from, I hope this helps you:
Emotions are like the waves at a beach.
Close your eyes.
Picture a beach. Stand on its sandy shores, feeling the grains between your toes. Feel the warm sun heating your skin gently. Feel the light breeze brushing through your hair.
Now on this beach, look out to the sea. It’s crystal clear and flat. Just a glittering, chill layer of water.
Enter the sea just up to your waist. Feel its warm embrace.
Now, picture small waves. Not big ones, just the kind that knock you back a bit when they hit you. The sort you used to run and jump into as a kid.
Just watch the waves build up and break. They build up in height, then come crashing down and sink back into the sea. Nonexistent.
The waves are our emotions.
They can be gentle and small or a giant tsunami. They gently push you, or they completely wash you away.
Sometimes we have feelings that gently affect us—like happiness, boredom, or sadness. And sometimes they are overwhelming and strong and feel uncontrollable, like a tsunami. Like excitement or anxiety.
But just like the waves, we have emotions. They build, they peak, and they begin to disappear. For whatever reason, they just go away.
That is because everything ends. Life. Crisp packets. Gym sessions. It’s a fact of life.
You don’t stay in one emotion forever; they come in waves. They come, peak, crash, return to the sea. And another wave takes its place.
But not all waves are the same; some are positive and some are negative. Some are enormous and some are gentle. You can’t have one without the other. Just as you can’t control the sea, you can’t choose not to have these feelings.
But, you can become an emotions surfer. Like real surfers, they don’t change the waves. They ride them. They use the wave to their advantage to have some fun.
So instead of trying to focus on not feeling a particular way, embrace the fact that the feeling is there. Sadness, anxiety, depression. Start to ride the wave.
Find comfort in knowing that although you feel so passionately right now, this wave will break and return to the sea.
Find ways to surf the wave; obviously, we want to keep surfing positive emotions forever. But there will always be new waves of positive emotion. You just have to keep looking for the next good wave.
For the negative emotions, you need to focus more on why they are there. Ask yourself, Why am I so upset? And is there anything I can do about it?
And if there’s not, if you are just sad, picture yourself standing in the calm sea and watching the waves pass you by, not knocking you over.
Anxiety is the easiest of the hard emotions to surf because anxiety can be caused by a lack of control. If you can’t control something, it makes you anxious. Another cause of anxiety is putting off things that scare you. So in order to surf that wave, you just have to focus on the one thing you are afraid of and overcome it.
And then realize that if something is no longer within your control, let it go. If you have done everything you physically can to get the outcome you want, then be at peace with the fact that you tried.
There is great peace in knowing that nothing is permanent, every moment is precious. Whatever is going on with you right now will pass, and new waves will take its place.
But look how far you have come—the obstacles you have faced, the brave choices you have made—and know that you are strong.
You can face anything.