Or less than.

From the book and workbook, “Living In the Light” by Shakti Gawain.

Feelings are an integral part of connecting to guidance and intuition. They are the language we use to define where we are.

Shatki says most of us don’t pay enough attention to our feelings and quickly stuff them at first sight.  She says that we are afraid of being consumed by them. The truth is we can be more than consumed, all the way to hurt, by ignoring them. In fact, Shakti tells us, “When we are willing to fully experience a particular feeling, the blocked energy will be released and the feeling will dissolve.”  So, what you resist persists.  If you shine a light on the feeling, see it, feel it, it will dissipate.

There is, perhaps, a lot more to say on this subject of feelings.  It takes up a whole chapter in my upcoming book.  Feelings are the guide posts. We need to feel them and hear them.  They are derived from thoughts that may or may not be true, but what we feel is always true. Feelings tell us the truth (even if it is based on false evidence).  I would add, then, we not only need to experience our feelings, we also need to respect them, listen to them.

Shakti also tells us that taking care of ourselves first is the best way to improve our connections to guidance, as well as others.  An important piece of this is listening to  feelings to identify what we need.  Taking care of ourselves is always at the center of any of this work.

Exercise 20  Talking with your Feelings
This mediation starts with closing your eyes and paying attention to the “middle of your body.” That would be your heart, your solar plexus or your abdomen.  See if you can find what you’re feeling in that moment.  Some examples are: peaceful, excited, anxious, happy, sad, lonely, playful.  Zero in on the unpleasant ones.  Go inside one of them.  Ask that feeling to talk to you.  Let it explain what it’s all about.  Listen with a loving and open heart.  Then ask the feeling if there’s anything you can do to take better care of yourself and this feeling.

Exercise 21 Expressing Your Feelings in Color
Gather crayons, paints, colored pencils and a big piece of paper.  Take a breath and note how you’re feeling.  Pick a color and let your hand just flow over the page.  Draw what you are feeling.  (You can use your dominant hand or your non-dominant hand.)  Follow any impulses; just let it flow.  Add another color.  Do whatever you feel led to do.  When you sense that it is complete, write three words, in crayon, that describe the feeling.

Exercise 22  Using Sound and Movement to Express Your Feelings
This is good when you’re not sure what you’re feeling.  Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart.  Breathe a few times and then as you inhale, stretch your hands above your head.  As you exhale, drop hands to the floor, bending at the waist.  Repeat a few times.  Shakti says, “Imagine you’re scooping energy up form the earth, then straighten your body and reach to the sky.”  On the exhale, breathe a sigh of relief.  The next step is to lightly pat your whole body. “This touching will energize you,” Shakti says.  “It lets your body know that you know it’s there.”  Twist from side to side, and shake out your arms and hands.  Pick up your feet and put them down.  Shakti wants us to make sounds when we do this. Whatever sounds you please. Then shake everything out.  As child songster, Raffi used to say, “Shake your sillies out.”  Get your self moving for five to ten minutes.  Then pound a pile of piles with your fist, a plastic baseball bat or a tennis racket.  Shakti suggests making sounds as you do.  “Scream and make noise for all the times you didn’t and wished you had.”  You can use the pillows to scream into if you need to.  She says to do this for another five or ten minutes.  When you’re done, rest a bit.  Notice how you’re feeling, physically and emotionally.  If you feel so compelled, write about it. Note how you feel after doing these exercise.  The point of these exercises is not to change your feelings, but to allow you to experience them more fully.

Let those feelings flow!