When you hear the term mindfulness, what that means is to quietly observe your own emotions, not judging or denying them, but just accepting that they exist. This includes observing the way an emotion makes you feel physically or where it seems to reside in your body. When you quietly observe your feelings this way, by default that keeps you in the present and you are not likely to act out impulsively on an emotion. It’s central to mindfulness therapies like DBT.
I feel very anxious today. I don’t know what’s causing it but that doesn’t matter. Probably nothing is causing it; it’s just free floating anxiety. In the past I might have drank too much, snarled and snapped at people to relieve the stress, or just suffered. I might have told myself I was being stupid and to snap out of it, mirroring the very words my narcissistic parents and ex would say to me whenever anxiety (or any other emotion they didn’t like) would strike. Feelings themselves are never wrong, though acting out on them in impulsive or destructive ways can be.
I went outside and sat on the porch and just observed my anxiety. I realized how physical emotions really are. The anxiety manifested as a tightness in my chest (heart area) and the middle of my abdomen [these may correspond with the third (solar plexus) and fourth (heart) chakras, if you’re into that]. I know I have blockages in those areas and this is causing a lot of my anxiety. I breathed deeply, imagining my breath flowing into these constricted, painful areas. It didn’t help a whole lot, but it did a little. I tried to connect the anxiety with a triggering event but couldn’t think of one. I told myself the free-floating anxiety was temporary, like a headache, and that it wouldn’t kill me, so I just surrendered to it without judging it as a good or bad thing, and that the anxiety wasn’t ME, it was just a feeling and would pass. And after a while, it did.