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ias206

Week 3 Informal Practice - Unpleasant Event Calendar

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ias206
Posted

Hi,

I thought I'd start this thread as I feel a bit lost with the Unpleasant Event Calendar. Being asked to focus on unpleasant events every day, I'm not sure what to do with these feelings I am focusing on. I'm not entirely sure what the purpose of this practice is, and if I'm doing it the right way. I've had quite a bad week this week and I'm not sure whether just collecting all these unpleasant experiences and writing them down is really helping. Welcoming any guidance!

Tine
Posted

Dear Izzy,
Thank you for reaching out! I do not know your circumstances what I know is that it's in general already really trying times, so focusing on unpleasant events is easily overwhelming.

Usually journaling when going through hard times can be beneficial as you are processing what is going on and you get to create some distance between the event and yourself. How about writing the events of your bad week down as a way of acknowledging them? Then for the calendar picking something small amongst them. Something that you can feel, investigate and let go of easily. You could also choose a bodily sensation you had during the formal practice. Maybe it was a bit too cold, something was itching, or there was a little pain.

Either way, my advice is to be gentle with yourself. You do not need to hold all the unpleasantness at the same time, just one small thing.
The purpose is to investigate what happens inside us, with our thoughts, emotions and bodily sensation during and after an unpleasant event. This way, we learn to read ourselves better and with that knowledge get more freedom in choosing our response rather than being washed away by our auto pilot. To investigate and train this ability, it's easier to start with something small and manageable and by that building our ability which will then also support us during bigger challenges.
Take your time.
What do you recognize when you pay attention to just one thing?

 

deboflan
Posted

Really like the way you have explained Unpleasant Event Calender. When we document, it can help bring an awareness to how we feel in our minds and body. We can sense the emotion and like you say read ourselves which gives us the freedom in choosing our responses. We can choose - I think this helps take us away from our habitual behaviour because we learn that we can choose our response. My journaling we are taking the time to process.

ias206
Posted

Thank you for your helpful responses! I think I'm a bit clearer on how to approach this now. 


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