Leaning Into Discomfort with Acceptance

The skill of acceptance is NOT intuitive. That’s because acceptance is asking us to do exactly the opposite of what our minds and bodies are programmed to do, when stressed or distressed! This practice will help you start using Willingness skills to lean into your discomfort and then practice letting go: leaning in and letting go. Are you willing?


  1. Tanja Milčić

    Hello dr. Fielding,

    I’ve been having problems with actually feeling emotions, it seems that I have been supressing them for some time and now all I am left with is a constant (sometimes stronger, sometimes milder) sense of anxiety, and nothing else.
    How can I open myself fully to the emotions and actually experience them?

    BTW, excellent work, since I started reading and listening to you, you’ve offered some interesting insights. 🙂

    Thank you for your answer,

    • Lara Fielding

      Hi Tanya! Thank you for commenting (so sorry for the delayed response!) This is such a great question. Sounds like you have been over regulating. I recommend you add skill 1: (Chapter 3) Taking Emotional Role Call to your regular practice. Your goal is to start opening up a place where you can safely feel your feelings, without engaging in the impulse to distract or minimize. In Chapter 8 you’ll lean about other to induce emotions, such as listening to music or watching movies that bring up a particular emotion. It may take some time. But keep at it. The more you practice inducing the emotion, while lovingly attending to how it feels, the thoughts that come up, and the bodily sensation – the more integrated your emotions will become. And I’d love to hear back how it goes! So proud of you for taking on this challenging work! Warmly, Lara

  2. Anonymous

    Hi Laura,
    I believe that I am an overregulator. I find it hard to understand my emotion. It has cause me to not do well socially and be disconnected with the world around me. I’m afraid to feel my emotions because every time I feel my emotions I do something that I regret. I recognize that overregulating has caused me to be unmotivated and to feel apathy. It has caused me to feel lost because I don’t know what I want to do or my purpose in life. My first job out of college was working as a litigation paralegal at a big law firm but I didn’t like the job but I was too stubborn to quit so I was let go. And I realized that I didn’t choose that job because it would be the right fit but I chose it for the prestige. Now I’m reading about emotional intelligence and adulting to learn how to understand my emotions and myself and feel motivated and connect with others better. I’m applying to jobs that I think would be a greater fit. I have an emotional habit of being a castle and focusing on myself. It worked just fine in school but it was very difficult in a job. I realized that my inability to connect with others caused communication issues which caused me to be taken out of teams. Learning social skills and new emotional habits will take months if not years but I’m making an effort. In my past job, it was hard for me to feel love and care for what I was doing. It’s kinda hard for me to care about others because I’m so used to caring about myself. But this has cause trouble with making connections and long lasting friendships. How do I learn to care about others?

    • Lara Fielding

      Dearest Anonymous, Thank you so much for this heartfelt and open self disclosure. You are already on your way. And I could not be more proud of you! It sounds like your self awareness is very good! In answer to your questions, “How do I learn to care about others?” That is going to be an ongoing practice. So, it’s not likely to feel natural at first. Start with your True North Values (Chapter 6) to identify why others are important to you. Then reverse engineer the behaviors (chapter 7) that will represent the value. For example, if others are important to you because you want to feel cared for, identify some actions you can take to spend time with more caring people. And also, (Chapter 11) identify how you can both give and take caring from others. …. Our interpersonal relationships can be super hard when we over regulate, because we connect with our emotions. Keep working on your Chapter 8 skills to get more connected with your own emotions. Then your ability to use them to connect with others will improve! Hope you find this helpful. Warmly, Lara


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