The Emotional Guest House

As our life in Lockdown begins to shift and change again, it is likely that new emotions, new feelings of fear and worry, as well as elation and excitement start to flood our consciousness.  For some, this could be an overwhelming time.


It was the very fact that some rules around Lockdown have lifted that enabled me to enjoy a beautiful evening at the Acorn Retreat ( for a Gong bath with one of life's most beautiful souls Jules Cooper from Dragon Fly Yoga ( and she reminded me of one of the poems that helped me in my times of darkness, depression and insomnia - The Guest House by Rumi. 



This being human is a guest house.
Every morning a new arrival.

A joy, a depression, a meanness,
some momentary awareness comes
As an unexpected visitor.

Welcome and entertain them all!
Even if they’re a crowd of sorrows,
who violently sweep your house
empty of its furniture,
still treat each guest honorably.
He may be clearing you out
for some new delight.

The dark thought, the shame, the malice,
meet them at the door laughing and invite them in.

Be grateful for whoever comes,
because each has been sent
as a guide from beyond.



This beautiful passage helped me understand my cocktail of emotions and how I could start to 'manage' them, to see them as guests,  welcome those guests in and greet them laughing and it inspired me to write the following words and then carry that forward in to a beautiful meditation.


It may be that your first guest is Sadness, bringing Melancholy and perhaps even Grief and Loneliness as companions.  Bring them in.  Show them to your guest room and sit with them quietly, wrapping them in your arms.  Hold them, let them know that it is ok to not be ok, allow the tears to roll until the well is empty.


The next guest may not even be expected and barges in loud, filling the emptiness with a violence – a tornado of Frustration, Resentment, Bitterness and Anger that overwhelms Sadness and sweeps through your house causing devastation. It is futile to fight it, welcome them through your door and allow them to rage until they blow themselves out. As Rumi points out, they are clearing a path for something else to follow.


The next guests to enter are cunning and quiet and often sneak in through the back door:  Guilt, Shame & Embarrassment are like shadows in the corners of the room.  Lurking, elusive and difficult to face.   But bring them in to the light and as Rumi says, take their hands and laugh, laugh loudly with them, bring them in to the light and let them go on their way.


When Depression, Pain, Hurt, Rejection & Disappointment coming knocking, they tend to move through the house turning off all the lights, closing all the curtains and plunging your house in to darkness.  Follow them, stay with them and find Strength who is often hiding in their midst and turn on the lights, open the curtains.  Allow them to remain, but introduce them to Compassion, Trust and Forgiveness and most of all to Hope.


I have found that Inadequacy and Unworthiness can walk through the door alongside Respect, Admiration, Worthiness and Confidence.  They are necessary partners to ensure Arrogance doesn’t get too big.  Welcome them all, for they are all on the path to find Success.


On a dark day you may find that your visitors are Fear, Insecurity, Anxiousness and Overwhelm and they fill your house so that there is simply no more room for any other guests.  When your house is crowded, then find the centre of your house, the heart of your home and bring in Love.  When you focus on Love, Love will grow and multiply many times over and soon, Love will fill your home and any other 'unwanted' guests will begin to leave of their own accord.


If you try to shut the doors to your house, build a blockade, you will find Numbness reigns.  When Numbness reigns, not only do you block out the guests you don't want above, but you also shut out all the others that you are hoping to find too.


So open your doors and welcome everyone in! For also in the crowd waiting to enter there is Joy and her partners Happiness and Gratitude.  They dance with Optimism and Excitement and sing with Contentment, Peace and Security.  Let them all in and have a party!


Rather than see any emotion or feeling as good or bad, choosing who to shut out and let in, open your doors to all your emotions, for they are what makes us human.  They are human emotions and they simply show us a need and provide an opportunity to grow when we acknowledge them and accept them.  By acknowledging and accepting these guests, they simply ease in their intensity and we begin to deactivate  the threat centre in our brains and in doing so, relieve stress and anxiety and make space for peace, love, hope, joy and all the other emotions that make us feel alive and able to thrive.


Upon reading this, you may wish to spend a few moments in silence, seeing who your guests are and as we have determined, greet them acknowledge and accept all your human feelings and breathe.


You may also like to do this exercise as a meditation and you can do this by following this link: Meditation - the Guest House


If you would like more support with how to manage your emotions and feelings, please join me in my private online community - the Heal Yourself Happy Hub - where each Monday I share a guided meditation at 8pm and also every weekday between 4-5pm, I share a mindfulness tip to help you find a moment of calm in the chaos!


If you found that this passage or meditation was helpful to you, please do leave me a comment or message me at [email protected].  I am always welcome a happy message in my inbox!






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Emotional Piano Improvisation by Alexander Nakarada














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