Locating Comfort in the Body is Sometimes Tricky Business
As important as it is to have the capacity to be with painful emotions and difficult experiences, it is equally as important to have the capacity to locate comfort in the body. All too often, people find themselves in extremes on this threshold. Either they seek pleasure and only pleasure, avoid pain at all costs, or they find themselves inundated by pain, unable to soothe.
I have learned that no matter how difficult life can feel, there is always a reference point of comfort somewhere within the body. That reference point might be a relaxed muscle, or a cool sensation, or the strength of you legs, or the tip of your toe, or the sensation of breath on the nose. Somewhere comfort always exists. Locating comfort is as much of an art form as painting. You have to work with and pay attention to a bunch of colors, or in this case layers of the internal experience, in order to find it.
A good exercise is the next time something feels overwhelming and it is too difficult to process the energy, simply start locating comfort in the body. Scan the body with your attention from the top of the head to the feet and toes. Work at not thinking through it, but really feeling each body part externally and internally and witnessing what is comforting. You might find that as you locate comfort the difficult emotion or experience you are having lowers in intensity to a level that it is more workable.