“When you can’t control what’s happening, challenge yourself to control the way you respond to what’s happening. That is where your power is.”
There is an organisation called the Institute of Heart Math that you may have heard of. They operate like a non-profit and have a lot of free stuff on their website if you are interested in having a browse. One of the key markers they use is what happens to the heart rhythm when we show an emotion. If we get angry or irritated the heart rhythm is irregular. However if we feel love and compassion the rhythm becomes even and what they call coherent. When our heart is in a coherent state we are able to think better, we connect with people better and we find it easier to respond to life’s challenges better.
At the start it takes some mindfulness. Mark Waldman, a neuroscientist, says “Acting on anger, or expressing it, is very disruptive to healthy brain function. But if you observe it and suppress the impulse to act out, you’ll develop greater calmness and emotional control.” He added, “If I were to put you in a brain scan machine and flash the word ‘NO’ for less than half a second, a dozen stress hormones will be released throughout your brain. And if you chronically worry or ruminate on negative thoughts, you’ll begin to damage your memory circuits. Anger is particularly dangerous because it interrupts the frontal lobes where logic and clarity take place.”
Enjoy being mindful when with family over Xmas!