Emotions are like weather systems in that you can’t control them. You can only experience them. That lack of control doesn’t make you inadequate; it just means you’re human.
Tara Brach, a clinical psychologist who writes from a Buddhist perspective, says the key to happiness to simply embrace your most difficult emotions, including worry, fear, and jealousy. This practice, which Brach calls radical acceptance, involves confronting life as it is rather than how you wish it would be.
The next time you’re dealing with a difficult situation, ignore the urge to repress or reject your worst feelings. That will only trigger a negative feedback cycle that can make the emotions stronger. By practicing radical acceptance, you can simply experience the bad emotion—and soon move on.
Ready for more tips on how to get through bouts of sadness, anxiety, and anger? Seek enlightenment with our Instaread on Radical Acceptance.