Emotional attachment happens when we introduce judgment into the moment.
We ask ourselves: “How do I feel about this?”. We personalize the experience by involving ourselves emotionally. In short, we take the moment to heart. The circumstance is no longer just a circumstance. It’s now about us. It’s now happening to us. When we live like this, our emotions change from moment to moment. We get pulled in one direction and then the next. It’s an emotional roller coaster!
It’s important for us to realize that we have a choice as to what we emotionally engage with.
This doesn’t mean that we need to be completely without emotions. Instead, we can choose to only emotionally involve ourselves with that which serves us. We can stop emotionally attaching to whatever harms us. We can do this by asking ourselves: “Is this something I want to emotionally involve myself with?”. Instead of: “How do I feel about this?”. We can make a choice before we engage emotionally. We can say: “No”. We can also say: “No” and “No more” even after we have emotionally involved ourselves. The choice is ours.
When deciding whether or not we want to emotionally involve ourselves we can ask: “Will being emotionally involved help in some way?” “Will it aid my life and growth?” “Will it improve the quality of my life?” “Will it bring out the best in me?”” Will it help me to deal with the situation at hand?”.
In order to recognize our choice, we need to be present in the moment.
We need to stop thinking, worrying, or stressing about the past or the future. Instead, we must focus on the here and now. We must engage with the moment in mindful awareness. Otherwise, we may miss the choice in the moment.
Exercising this strategy will allow you to deal with things objectively, rather than emotionally. Many times, when we are emotionally volatile our judgment and decision making is impaired by our own emotions. Unchecked, we end up sabotaging ourselves. Deciding what we emotionally engage with can help keep our emotions level, even while the circumstances around us change, even while we deal with stressful situations. We can keep a clear head instead of drowning in our emotions. We are not further complicating matters by reacting from our emotions rather than our intellect.
Shifting what we focus our emotions on can help to bring out the best in us.
By doing this we can empower and support ourselves. This is a form of self-care. It can provide us with a more positive outlook and experience of life. It can help us to find and keep some inner peace, no matter the circumstance.
As with anything, this is a skill that can be developed with practice.
Start by working on presence. Then work on your awareness. Exercise the choice when it comes into your awareness, even if you have already emotionally involved yourself. To shift out of emotional attachment, allow yourself time to process the emotions you are already experiencing. Setting a time limit is a great tool for not allowing things to spiral out of control. You could dedicate a certain amount of time, or a certain amount of time daily depending on what you are dealing with. After that allotted time, start focusing on what you can do, rather than what you can’t. Take action and focus on the action. Don’t ask yourself how you feel about all of it, just keep going.
If there is nothing you can do, focus on the new moment.
Or shift your focus to another aspect of the moment. If it is a challenging moment, you may decide to shift your focus to self-care. Make time for yourself. Do something that helps you to find peace and calm. Center and ground yourself. It’s OK to take a time out. It’s OK to leave something and come back to it later.
Even in the most difficult times, it is important to be mindfully aware of our choices.
We must not allow our pain to completely swallow us. We must maintain some balance in order to function, in order to work through the situation, in order to engage in self-care. Remember, there will be times when emotionally engaging with something painful will be to our benefit. Making a conscious choice allows us to have more impact in the moment.