Don’t you wish they taught emotional management in school?
If everyone around you was learning how to face their own emotions with grace, and with growth and equanimity in mind, that would prevent a lot of drama. If you practice gaining control over negative thoughts and emotions, you may have noticed a greater power to transform relationships of all kinds and to reach your goals in life.
The mind is supposed to be a servant, not the master. However, despite our best intentions, we frequently encounter situations that trigger feelings that overwhelm our judgment and behavior. There are just too many situations in which they can take the liberty of overpowering us.
Here are six effective ways to take back control of your thoughts and emotions.
This one seems to appear in most of our lists, but it’s very important. If you don’t have a regular practice yet, it’s not hard to start one. Make a fire pit in the yard, and gaze into the fire. All that exist are the crackling sounds, the heat and the dancing flames. Let it absorb your whole being. Fire gazing can help keep you grounded and purify your emotions. You can also gaze at the sunset or moon, repeat a mantra, focus on the feeling of the breath or listen to the birds. There are many ways to meditate.
Your emotions have a smaller negative effect when you’re grounded. Grounding brings equanimity and reduces emotional overwhelm and anxiety, giving you greater control of your mind. It also calms negative thought.
Yoga poses that generate feeling in the body are often great for grounding. So are guided visualizations like this one. Other ideas include daily jogging, aerobic exercise, nature walks, self-massage (pay special attention to legs and feet) and gazing at a mountain.
Your emotions and breath are connected. When you need to confront someone who wronged you, or ask the boss for a raise, you may notice that your breathing restricts. Negative thoughts will also affect your breathing. The respiratory system has a way of repressing negative emotions so you don’t have to feel them.
Diaphragmatic breathing has many emotional and physical health benefits. Breathe through the nose, and imagine your abdomen as a balloon. Fill the balloon as it expands in all directions. You want to feel it in your back and groin and not just your belly. For an even fuller breath, let your chest fully expand after your abdomen does on the inhale.
Gut flora and emotional health are intimately connected. Good breathing, combined with probiotics, will reduce unwanted emotions and anxiety. A UCLA yogurt study showed greater connectivity between parts of the brain associated with emotional and cognitive processing (1). Probiotics enhance both. Another study found great benefits for the immune system and the frequency and severity of illnesses (2).
Kefir is milk or water that is loaded with probiotics through culturing. These probiotic bacteria will colonize your gut for longer periods than yogurt strains.
Ideally, you want to buy kefir “grains” for water or milk and make your kefir at home. Making it from grains gives you the highest number of probiotic bacteria. Milk kefir always yields more strains than water kefir, too.
Another great way to do it with less maintenance is to buy starter culture from Yogourmet or Cultures 4 Health. The latter sells water and milk kefir grains and starter cultures. The only catch in the case of grains is that they dehydrate them. It will take you a few days to activate them.
The least favorable way is to buy pre-made kefir from the store, especially if it’s pasteurized. Far less people report health benefits from kefir they found in the dairy isle.
Tulsi: Also known as Holy Basil, this herb reduces stress, reduces the stress hormone cortisol, oxygenates all your organs and improves moods (3). It also nourishes the Heart Chakra to increase love and compassion. Nambu’s Love & Grace Formula is PHONEME INFUSED™ with sound vibrations that support the Heart Chakra and your ability to give and receive love, both with humans and the Divine.
Guduchi: Also known as Giloy, this anti-aging herb is cherished for its antioxidants, immune system enhancement and its ability to improve moods (4). People report enhanced ability to process difficult moods. Guduchi also helps maintain a healthy gut and reduces inflammation. Nambu’s Guduchi is infused with sound vibrations that help your throat chakra. Fun fact: Guduchi is so full of life that it does not need soil or water to grow.
Turmeric: This popular Asian spice reduces inflammation and loads your body and brain with antioxidants. People report an improved “glow” and enhanced moods, and studies back this up (5). Nambu’s Shreem Brzee Formula is infused with the Shreem Brzee mantra, which eliminates poverty consciousness and attracts wealth through the power of Wealth Goddess Archetype Lakshmi. This formula also contains black pepper extract to increase the amount of Turmeric’s nutrients you absorb by up to 2,000% (6).