Are you feeling stuck, worthless, anxious, confused, overwhelmed… ? Then STOP IT!

When dealing with difficult emotions it might be useful to learn to step back, explore our own emotional responses and make room for painful feelings, sensations, thoughts and emotions that shows up.

Instead of running from them, or trying to avoid, control or struggle with them ; we may turn toward our emotion with openness, breathing into it and allowing it to express itself in the body.

STOP IT might be a useful Acronym to remind ourselves  to slow down and look at our experience mindfully, to recognize and understand what is happening in this moment, while perspective taking and focusing on our intention to embody it and act accordingly.

Doing this we are changing our relationship with the content of our difficult thoughts, emotions, urges to experience it in a contextually adaptive manner, while being consistent with our deep values and our environment. 


Present-focused and emotion awareness

I am being psychologically present consciously connecting with and engaging in whatever is happening in this moment (good or bad) in a process of non- judgmental, present-focused awareness. Practicing an attitude of presence, openness and curiosity.

Opening and conscious acceptance

I make room for painful feelings, sensations, urges, thoughts and emotions that shows up. I drop the struggle and decide not to fight, to avoid or to control (“fight-flight-freeze” response) what is happening in this moment .

Cognitive flexibility training 

I learn to step back from thoughts and emotions and observing their presence. I have thoughts but I am not my thoughts. I am an emotional being, but I am not my emotions. Doing this I am changing my relationship with the content of my thoughts, emotions, urges.

Perspective taking

I am open, flexible in my experience, and able to see my thoughts and emotions from different points of view. I am able to understand oneself and being able to take the perspective of others. 

Showing compassion for oneself and others

In difficult times, when I fail or when things do not go as I want, I can soothe myself sweetness, be warm and understanding towards myself. I develop skills to be emotionally open to ones and others suffering and to alleviate it.

Clarifying core values, choices and priorities

Choose what’s important to me ? Decide which person I want to be ? 

Core values are my chosen directions in life. Values give my life meaning, vitality, power, inspiration, and motivation. Considering key areas of my life, considering which are most important to me, and uncover what I care about and stand for—my core values—in each area that’s important to me.

Committed Action 

Taking effective action, guided by my values, even in the presence of obstacles. The action towards what is really important for me, makes it possible to pass from a life undergoing to a life chosen in full consciousness. 

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RESPIRE : Je bouge, donc je pense. Je respire, donc je suis. (Editions l'Harmattan 2021)Voir