Published on 04/29/20
Submitted by Allison Whitman, ESS Clinical Coordinator
The meditation follows the acronym R.A.I.N. It’s a 5 minute meditation to calm challenging feelings. When you’re struggling with challenging feelings, feel stuck, or notice that you’re being hard on yourself, try R.A.I.N.
R-Recognize what’s going on. Acknowledging, in any given moment, the thoughts, feelings, situations, and behaviors that are affecting you.
A-Allow the experience to be there just as it is. Letting the thoughts, emotions, feelings, or sensations you have recognized simply be there, without trying to fix, change, solve, or avoid. Allowing creates a moment of pause to deepen attention.
I-Investigate with interest and care. Ask yourself what most wants attention? How am I experiencing this in my body? What am I believing? What does this vulnerable place want from me? What does it most need?
N-Nurture with self-compassion (Not identifying). Self-compassion begins in the moments where you recognize you are suffering. Intentionally nurture your inner life with self-care. To do this, try to identify what you most need and offer some gesture of active care that might address this need.
Below is a script for RAIN meditation:
Find a comfortable seat on a chair or cushion, start to feel the touch of your body on your chair or seat.
Sitting up straight find a comfortable balance that allows you to feel at ease. Take a few deep breaths, relax your shoulders, your muscles throughout your body. Let go of all the tension in your body. Bring to mind a situation in your life that’s currently challenging or difficult. Pick something easy that’s not too intense. Think about that situation and those feelings associated with it.
Starting with the R in RAIN recognize what’s going on. Notice the thoughts come up about the situation and the emotions you may be feeling. Become aware of the tone of your dialogue is it critical, judgmental, kind, understanding? Whatever it is become aware. Notice how your body feels; light and energized, tight and anxious. Sometimes it can feel heavy and depressed and other times relaxed and at ease. Whatever it is just notice what’s going on in your body.
Next is Allow, try to allow all of those thoughts, feelings, and sensations to just be as they are. Give yourself the space to be with those uncomfortable feelings without trying to change or suppress them. Feel whatever is coming up and just let it be as it is. You don’t have to like or agree with what’s going on, just soften your resistance to it and allow it to rise and pass through.
Now, investigate your experience with a sense of kindness ask yourself what is calling your attention most right now. How am I experiencing it in my body? What is the story I am telling myself about it and is it really true? What do I need right now?
The last step is to practice not identifying with these thoughts and feelings. If you observe your thoughts and feelings for any period of time you will see they are constantly coming and going and changing all the time, like the weather. You are not your thoughts, emotions and sensations. From this perspective try to observe and experience whatever is going on without getting caught up in it. Simply allow for the space for things to simply rise and pass through. Now let all of the thoughts, feelings and images dissolve and let your mind rest. When you are ready, bring your attention back to the touch of your body on your seat and open your eyes.