“Depend upon it, Sir, when a man knows he is to be hanged in a fortnight, it concentrates his mind wonderfully.” Samuel Johnson
Watching strong emotions and compulsive thoughts are like studying the obvious changing flows in the turbulent water of rapids – eddy currents coming and going, standing waves surging and subsiding, sub-currents exploding then subsiding; its a much easier study than trying to discern the subtle changes in the laminar flow of a wide, slow paced river coasting down a long, flat plain.
Which is why I find meditating while feeling strong emotions – anger, sadness, embarrassment, excitement, pleasure – an ideal situation; my mind tends to wander when I’m feeling pleasantly comfortable, but strong emotions or physical pain returns me to the present moment, where it becomes obvious that what appears to be a wall of feeling is made of a stream of discrete thoughts and feelings.
Its meditating in easy mode.
Moreover, its fun, and for the same reason kayaking down heavy white water is fun. And like shooting whitewater, you get better at it with practice.