Tension taming tools

Wellbeing Blog, Meditation

Do you ever find yourself frustrated beyond measure with the way someone speaks towards you? As summer heats up and the pace quickens even more, when you have 3000 things to do in one day plus 10 parties to attend and meetings in between, have you ever rolled the car windows up just to have a good SCREEEEAAAMMMM?

When we hold things in – stuff that really gets to us – we are suppressing the release of our emotions, which creates blockages, stress, and tension in our bodies and our minds.

But how do you deal with that person that is impossible to deal with? The challenging client, the pushy partner or the person who is making your whole day go swiftly from good to ugly? How would you ideally like to be able to handle these situations? With reactions and fireworks (which also drag you into their crazy zone) or with patience, grace and ease?

One of the principles of NLP (Neuro Linguistic Programming) is that people are always doing the best that they can at any given time. Which means however you choose to deal with it will also be the best YOU can at that moment. But wouldn’t it be useful to have some tension taming tools to ensure you can transform difficult situations while taking good care of yourself emotionally (and therefore physically and mentally) too?

There are some simple tools that can help – you just need to learn how!

Tension Tamer Tool One
Spacial anchoring – taking a vital step back

•    Choose a colour, and draw an imaginary circle around the ‘challenging individual’ and do the same around yourself
•    Draw a third circle in a different colour and physically step into this circle. Choose the feelings you want to feel when you are standing in that circle (calm, light, patient etc)
•    Notice the space you have created emotionally as you step into this third circle. Notice the difference you feel as you step into the new emotional space

NB. This is worth practicing at home!

Tension Tamer Tool Two
Slow, deep breathing techniques

•    Breathe – inhale into your belly for one, two, three, four and up to five counts. Smile inside – yes, even if what is happening is wrong – then swallow and exhale for the same amount of counts
•    Continue to breathe more deeply and slowly then notice how much calmer you feel. Slow, deep breathing cools the body and the emotions – too much anger or frustration bubbling up places stress on our hearts, and is toxic for our bodies
•    As you focus on your breathing you can still be present with the person, yet you are creating space within yourself and a layer of internal protection against their crazy vibe-ration-s!
•    You also start to slow the whole situation down – as you become cooler and calmer this sets the precedent. You can also match their breathing (creating an unconscious rapport) to lead them into a cooler, calmer place, as humans natural are inclined to follow the leader

Tension Tamer Tool Three:
Grounding elements

•    Feel your feet on the ground (which instantly grounds you and helps you get out of those ‘oh my God, they are being such unbelievably difficult *&@%*’ type thoughts) and bring your hands together in front of your solar plexus, palms slightly parted, fingertips touching
•    This creates a loop of energy that protects your third chakra (where we process emotions) and helps you to stay strong and energetically clear, plus gives you the opportunity to avoid ‘reacting’. You stay in control of yourself – and thus the outcome of the situation.

As soon as you can, try to find your personal ‘right way’ to express your annoyance, frustration, anger and tension. Whether through exercise, running, swimming (brilliant in our blissful blue waters, where the salt also drains the system of toxins and toxic emotions), cycling or singing along to your favourite tunes, it all helps. Singing in particular transforms the vibes around a situation, helping you change your experience into one that is brighter, lighter and a wonderful way to follow up that much-need in-car scream!