Have You Juiced Your Emotions Lately? 3 Steps to Get Started.

Balance reDefined Radio Episode 59

(The following is the transcript of the podcast.)

Hi, I’m Connie Sokol, a national speaker, bestselling author, program founder, and mother of seven and loving it. I’m reaching and teaching 1 million listeners to live a purposeful, organized and joyful life. You can too. So let’s go.


Welcome back to Balance reDefined. I’m Connie Sokol and I love to share fabulous things that will brighten your day and help you get Balanced reDefined.


So today I am asking the question, have you juiced your emotions recently? Have you done this?


This is an amazing concept to me and I got this from an article by Deepak Chopra and I thought this was a fantastic thought and so I want to share this with you today so you can kind of weigh in on how you feel about this, but have you juice your emotions? He says there’s a particularly deep relationship between our emotions and thoughts, both subconscious and unconscious and our digestion.


Have you ever considered that? That your emotions and digestion, they are connected and how fully connected they are? When you think about it, when’s the last time when you had a problem or a stress or something you were really agonizing over? How did you feel? Either you were, your stomach was in knots, you know those different phrases. I was sick to my stomach. Um, I had the dreaded thing right here in the pit of my stomach. Think of all of those phrases. Why is that? Mostly because our digestion is absolutely linked and studies and science actually support this understanding of the belly-brain emotional connection.


In fact, he goes on to state that clinical psychologist at the University of California in L.A. as well as other scientists in the field of food, mood connection. They’ve carried out studies supporting the connection between the physiology and emotions such as anxiety and depression.


So I want you to consider, if you’re dealing with the stress right now, where is it lodging? Some people have it in the back, you know, so they have back pain in the neck. It’s a pain in the neck, whatever it might be. But consider how it might be affecting your digestion. A lot of times, I know for women, when we’re stressed out, we’re reaching, we’re reaching for the chocolate, we’re reaching for the carbs, we’re reaching for the sweet and salty snacks, right? And that goes into our system. But then think about what it’s doing and also how well are we digesting that stuff that’s not very good in the first place?


We know it, but okay, sometimes you just got to have it. So I want you to consider that connection because this is really powerful. This article is so good. He goes on to talk about, he says, “in other words, the same force that enables you to extract nourishment from food, allows you to extract sustenance from life when this force is dampened due to emotional upheaval or just the modern stressors of daily life.”


It can have a direct effect on our capacity to digest food as well as our feelings. Now is this, so I want to go back to this whole concept of what is this force and what is it they’re talking about? This is in the the belief system of Ayurveda. I don’t know if you’re familiar with that or if you’ve heard of that, but it’s, it’s an Eastern Indian kind of medicine and way of living. It’s a philosophy of life and you’re very much aligned with earth, with, with your, who you are, with your body systems. It’s all they have Vata, Pitta and Kapha and kind of you can assign sort of your body into those body types.


Vata is if you’re thin and you have high energy and Kapha is more yoy have solid big bones – like we always said we didn’t college, right, I’m just big boned -but you have big bones and you’re kind of more like when you walk, you can feel that you are walking, you know it’s thump thump, and Pitta is more, there’s like a fire, you’re on fire, like your stomach’s on fire, you have a lot of drive you, you get angry, easier, those kinds of things.


Now you can be a combination, Vata-Pitta, Pitta-Kapha, those kinds of things, and so you start to understand a little bit more about your personality and how you respond to people, to situations, to things by seeing yourself in sort of these three body types.


So anyway, that’s just like, oh well I’m not obviously an Ayurveda expert, but I love a lot of the things that they do teach and they do teach you to be more mindful. And I love the one, this one teacher that he is quoting, an Ayurvedic teacher, Dr Vasant Lad, he says, “emotions are like mangoes, we have to learn to ripen them and then juice them. When emotions are juiced, they are deeply nourishing, even sweet.”


Isn’t that beautiful? That concept just totally took it to a new level for me with emotions not to be afraid of them, not to avoid them, but to ripen them and then juice them so that they can be nourishing and sweet so that you can pass through the sorrow, pass through the angst and be able to get to that other sweet side. But there’s no skipping. You got to go through it and isn’t it beautiful? If we can do that in a way that is intentional so that we can juice our emotions instead of them fermenting. (And this is my own little add on analogy there, that wasn’t his so if it’s a really bad pun, that’s not him.)


So anyway, he goes on to say that in Ayurveda, the particular energy that he’s talking about this force, he says it’s a type of energy that’s an integrating digestive capacity of the human body-mind system. And it’s this energy that helps us to digest and absorb the nutrition from the food that we eat. And it’s also the forest responsible for digesting our life experiences.


So when you think about it that way, you’re kind of like, if you imagine like maybe the Pacman game, you know, you’re kind of metabolizing these emotions rather than stuffing them, shelving them, sort of doing a passive burying of them. What you’re doing is really eating them up, like allowing them to digest and be gone, and the good parts of it can now be nourishing and be used for energy and for goodness, and I love that concept. I love this mental picture.


So what happens when you feel like, oh, you know, that’s a really great concept Connie, but this big emotion that if I even close my eyes, it just is frightening. It’s too scary, it’s too big, it’s too much. And this is what he says about that.


He says, because many of us are afraid to feel our emotions, he says, “if we lovingly hold space and presence for our emotions to flow through us, they can find a natural digestive process and end point. Just like eating a piece of fruit, we don’t have to tell it what to do in our digestive system.”


So imagine you eat an apple, eat a banana. It just naturally digest. The body just does what it needs to do. You don’t have to stop and think of every step that piece of fruit has to go through. And he says, “the same thing holds true with the emotions. If we simply observe and feel the emotion, it will rise, fall, and come to a natural state of completion. We can let go of what isn’t needed, I.e. elimination and keep what is useful, that nutritional wisdom.”


So it says that if we juice our emotions in the moment when they’re ripe, we become calmer, more stable people, and we seem ironically less emotional. So isn’t that interesting? So if you’re feeling really emotional but you feel like you’re kind of pushing those emotions down and keeping them down so they don’t surface and overwhelming because you know what? You got a big presentation today at work, right?


So I encourage you and I invite you to take 5 – 10 – 15 minutes and just go to a little place of refuge. Maybe for Moms, it’s the bathroom. We all know that’s true. But go to a place of refuge and just be able to allow the emotion to flow through you. Not to get stuck or dammed or kind of like stopped, but just to let it flow through you and observe it. I love what he said about observing it.


Now I love this especially because I’ve always told my kids, when you feel an emotion, don’t reject it or assign a good or bad to it. Just sit it on a chair. Just imagine putting that emotion on a chair and then just observe it.


Where did that come from?
Why am I feeling this?
Is there something else going on?
What’s the root reason for it?


Just asking yourself some questions, kind of like a detective so that you get an idea of what is happening, why this emotion is surfacing and why is it surfacing now? So maybe consider doing that. Putting your emotions on a chair and just sit and observe it without judging and just understand a little more about where it came from, why it’s here and where it needs to go. Kind of a little play on that – who are we, where do we come from, and where are we going?


So in the light of that, I want you to consider just a couple of tips that I have for you.


The first thing on this sort of kind of emotion digestion connection is I want you to consider the first thing is to name them. ‘Kay?. So I have my cute little six and a half year old. I have seven kids. My oldest is in his twenties and my youngest little caboose, a six and a half, and so with him it’s kind of nice because it reminds me to get basic about my emotions because when you’re talking to a six and a half year old, you have to get basic, and so he was going through some really difficult emotions when our family went through a really difficult time and the idea came to me of having him make emotion, facial faces. So having, I drew circles and then I had him draw faces of emotions that he recognized or felt at different times.


So I had him draw something, made him happy and a sad face and a mad face and just different faces and this was really powerful because when he was three and four when we were going through this tough time, he, he couldn’t always articulate what exactly he was feeling. So it was really helpful for me to say, can you point to an emotion face and try to help me understand? And so we would make the faces. I helped him, but he would make the face with the frown or like, um, he did one for anger with the really *errrrr* kind of looking mouth, and so he could point to a picture that could articulate and sometimes it was a mix of those emotions, which was really great to be able to help him to articulate it, but what was wonderful is that as he started to recognize with an face with an emotion and knew that there wasn’t a judgment, he wasn’t a good or bad boy for feeling it, it was just how he felt and then he could do something with it.


The more that he did that, the more he started to understand his emotions better and quicker and then amazingly, one day we were talking and he started getting all upset and tantrumy and kind of frustrated. I said, hey bud, what’s going on? I, this isn’t your usual you, so can you tell me, did something happen today? What are you feeling? Can you point to a face? And then he looked at me the sweetest thing and he said, we forgot a face. I said, oh, we did. We forget to write one on there, what should it be? And he said, we forgot overwhelmed. Is that the sweetest thing? And so we do, we drew a circle of overwhelmed, and isn’t that the nicest thing when, when they can make a connection and then they have their own learning, they’ve made a deeper connection and now they’ve added on and it’s become there’s, so good.


So how does that relate to us who are not six and a half? Well, on most days, maybe some days, but um, when we’re trying not to be six and a half in our emotions, what can we do? Well, I invite you to lay still and name the emotion. Just like a six and a half year old. Get a quiet space, lock the bedroom door, lay on your bed and just lay down. Don’t be productive. Don’t think about the grocery list. Just lay down and then name the emotion, and there’s probably several. So if you need to have a little pad and paper next to you, don’t feel compelled to use, but just have it there so you can write. And just write down those thoughts and feelings that come to you. If not, then just let them flow through your mind like a ticker tape, a little message board thing that does a ticker tape that just lets it go.


I feel sad, I feel angry or feel resentful. I feel frustrated, I feel hurt, I feel neglected, I feel unheard. I feel unseen, whatever it might be, and then don’t self edit.


Just let all of those thoughts and feelings rise. And just like they were saying in here, just like your body will digest a piece of fruit, it will rise with this emotion. It will rise and fall and come to a natural state of completion. And in that process, remember you’re going to let go of what isn’t needed and you’re not going to keep it. You’re just going to let go of what isn’t it needed, what isn’t working for you, and you’re going to keep what’s useful and you’ll know what’s useful because it will feel nourishing. It will feel good. It will feel delicious to you. Yeah, I know we’re talking about emotions, but it will feel delicious.


It will feel peaceful, joyful. In fact, if you want more biblical, it’s in Corinthians, the fruits of the spirit where it talks about patience and the fruit of that is love and of the fruits of the spirit of love and patience and understanding and all of these good things that you will feel. Now, it doesn’t mean you’re going to feel that every second. It means that ultimately that is how you’re going to feel. So let those emotions rise and fall and then let them go. We don’t go back and dig it up. We don’t. We just let it go and that is such an important thing.


So then, once you’ve named the emotion, probably shed some tears, maybe wanted to get up and get chocolate, before you do that name how you want to feel. Say I want to feel peaceful about this situation, person or event, this experience. I want to feel happy. I want to feel clear. I want to feel calm, I want to feel positive, I want to feel confident, I want to feel discerning, whatever it is that you want to feel. Name those and name a couple. And then say those over and over. Almost like a meditation. I want to feel confident, clear and courageous. Couple of deep breaths in-out breath. And then I want to feel confident, clear, courageous. Just say it several times in a row. So that keeps you calm, clear and courageous and just keep focused on how you want to feel.


Again, letting go of what’s not working and focusing your energy now that you’ve identified the negative, now focusing on how you want to feel, the things you want to have happen.


And then the last thing is to choose one action to help you get there. So, a thought or an action that will shift this emotion into what you want it to be. And you can do something like, I can read an article, I can talk to a friend, I can talk to a coworker that I trust. I can talk to a healthcare provider, whatever that might be, but take an action step.


So just recently I had this experience where one of my children that we had a situation that arose and I was like, oh, I handled it in a certain way. And I felt good about it and I felt like I did the right thing but I wasn’t sure. I wasn’t sure-sure, but I was, I was pretty sure and so it was one of those moments where it’s like, ah, I just want to be sure and I thought of a friend, a friend’s name came to mind and she’s just a very even-keeled, doesn’t tell me what I want to hear, tells me what she sees in a situation in a balanced way as kind of as truth.


She’s like a very good wise loving judge and I thought, Oh, I’m just going to call and run, run this by her and she doesn’t hesitate to tell me if she thinks I’m wrong and it was great. We had this conversation, I shared my thoughts, what I did and she she hit different key points and said, yeah that was, that sounds to me for what you wanted from the situation and the understanding you were going for. That sounds like exactly what you should have done and the things that you maintained and and actually proved to be true for both of us because it ended up creating more unity in my relationship with this child than I had imagined, so it worked out to be a positive, but I really just needed that one action to sort of cement that confusion, that worry, that wonder and that was a really helpful thing.


Another thing you can do is listen to your body and soul because a lot of times we just push aside what our body’s trying to tell us when our body is really part of our intelligence and it’s trying to talk to us and trying to let us know something’s right, something’s wrong, you need to pay attention to something here. So it’s really wise if we will listen. Now what’s beautiful is it in this article it mentioned three things that could be possible action items and I loved them all.


One. The first one was some yoga. So they’re saying if you’re feeling something in your digestion and it’s not working, stop, taking one of those tummy-x things, right? Just listen to your body, don’t mandate it. And do something about it. So instead of just popping a pill or an an acid or something, say what’s going on here. And they said, Yoga, do yoga flow, a yoga flow for digestion. And I love these. You do a lot of twists, lot of breathing out and it just feels like you get cleaned out from the day. Honest to Pete, it’s so yummy now I’m not a big yoga person. I kept thinking maybe it’s like you got to go on these weird really difficult poses like a pretzel and I’m going to hurt myself. But that’s not what it is.


I love doing particularly – Yoga with Adrian. She names her flows. I know there’s a lot of people out there doing great stuff, but there’s just one that works for me. She has a lot of different flows for anxiety, even for weight loss for-um-I’m trying to think of all the things that she has listed there for meditation ones and for movement ones and, and just for all kinds of, she has digestion flows and I love them. So give that a try and see if that works. So that’s, that’s yoga. And see if it serves you.


The second. Um, and that’s one thing that I love that they always bring up in the yoga and she’ll say this often is she’ll say, um, we’re just clearing out the dross and letting go of what doesn’t serve you. That’s so beautiful. Just letting go of what doesn’t serve us. I love that. And so try yoga. If that doesn’t serve you, then do something else to maybe a different practice.


And another thing that you can do that they mentioned in the article is a massage. Get a massage so that you can get the emotions that are embedded in your deep cells in that cell muscle memory, and you can get that out. And I know this is so true, people, I get a detox wrap almost every week if I can swing it.


I love it. It’s a wrap and I get all wrapped up and it just sort of, it accesses the lymph nodes and just tries to get drainage and just, but it’s all, it’s a yummy process and it smells good and you just get wrapped up and then they massage your, your hands, your feet and your scalp. Oh my goodness. It’s like a piece of heaven. I will work like a dog all week, I’m making my deadlines just to have that reward at the end of the week. It is so yummy. So try getting a massage and I personally had to go with one that didn’t make me feel like I had died. Like not in a good way. Like I came out and could barely drive home kind of massage. For me, that wasn’t working for me. But other people I know they like that deep tissue that’s Swedish massage is like jump on the table and like bounce up and down on my back kind of thing and that’s just not for me, but find what works for you because that might be the ticket for you.


The last thing they say is meditation and that is such a powerful tool and you know I talk about it all the time, find a meditation. There’s a bazillion apps of meditations that work and that you will like but find, just try a couple, try Headspace, it’s a great app. You can try it. Try a couple of meditations, see what works for you, a voice that works for you, a style that works for you. See if it’s more religious for you or if it’s just a little bit more earthy for you, whatever that works, but just try it. The very least you can do is just what I just suggested, say a few positive things and then say them in a sentence. Take a few deep cleansing breaths than say that sentence again.


Remember, keep them simple and focus so that you can stay focused on what you’re doing and add in that breathing so it helps clear it out, clear out any negative thoughts or any distracting thoughts. That really does make a difference. So hopefully out of the things that I share with you today, you have got this concept.


So just, just asking, are you excited to juice your emotions, to actually get them to a place that is sweet? And again, I’m going to refresh you with that wonderful quote , because it’s so beautiful from that Dr. Vasant Lad, “Emotions are like mangoes. We have to learn to ripen them and then juice them. When emotions are juiced, they are deeply nourishing, even sweet.”


So I love that. And again, lastly, if we juice our emotions in the moment when they’re ripe, we become calmer, more stable people. We seem ironically less emotional.


Ooh, do I love that. And the name of the article is The Link Between your Emotions and Your Digestion and it’s Deepak Chopra and you can find it on Deepakchopra.com. Wonderful article, really appreciate the things that they shared in there and really made me want to juice my emotions. So got a whole lot of songs coming to mind here, but I will not digress and I will close up shop here.


As always, if you want more wonderful podcast, hit the subscribe button and I would love your comments below to hear if you’re liking this, if you’ve got something great from it. If you want more great stuff, not just in a podcast, then go to Conniesokol.com s-o-k-o-l.com and you can find me and I’ve got TV segments, I’ve got blog posts, I’ve got programs, I’ve got all kinds of yummy stuff, free classes, all kinds of good stuff for you.


And a life shift quiz. If you’re like, ah, I’m kind of a life shifting point, but I don’t know what to do. I know there’s a rumble. I don’t know what to do with it. Take the free life shift quiz and we will sort it out for you and help give you some directions of where you can possibly, potentially go. You choose, but we give you some directions so that it can get you onto good footing and started on a path that works for you. So all of this great stuff, as always, Conniesokol.com meanwhile, love you, love you, love you. Thank you for sharing and spending time together. This is so joyful. And if you always remember this one thing, then keep it to your soul. Remember, make this your year to get Balance reDefined.

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