What does it mean to say we are in charge of our own feelings? Can't others make us feel bad? I mean who wouldn't feel hurt if someone walks up and punches them in the nose! Of course, the other person “made” them hurt! It's obvious, right!
Yes, there are obvious physical repercussions if someone pops you in the face and bloodies your nose, and it might physically “hurt,” a few minutes, or so, but it's what we tell ourselves, our story, about what just happened that determines our emotional response. It is what we THINK about the situation, NOT what the other person does or says, that determines how we feel about it.
Many times I've seen children, after being pushed down, (Daniel and I have watched seven children grow up and out from under us, and now the grandchildren are coming along! :)) “decide” on a story and then react accordingly. And I've watched children get knocked down who decided not to make a big deal (story) out of it.
You've seen it, right? Those times when a child gets up, dusts themselves off, and moves on. What's the difference in the two responses? Of course, it's what they tell themselves that determines their response! Have you seen a kid fall down in some way and then look around to see if there was someone worth making a scene for? After all, sometimes it pays to be hurt ; if it looks like it might pay dividends in sympathy, lighter duty, or for vindication purposes to get the other guy in trouble, then why wouldn't one decide to settle on a story about how badly hurt one is?
No, I am not talking about the “bad” kids that do this, I am talking about what we ALL do! Constantly! We walk around describing to ourselves how fairly or unfairly we are being treated and what we decide in that description of the world around us determines how we feel.
Yes, I know, I know … ‘but Lynne, you would feel that way TOO if such and such happened to you!'
There may be a widely accepted expectation for a certain reaction of how one would feel in a given set of circumstances, and when we blindly believe and cater to those widely-accepted notions, we will certainly experience all of the feelings that go hand-in-hand with such notions. But, that does not prove that outside events are in control of our feelings! Our mental/emotional state is UP TO US!
Of course, as long as we think outside people and events are the source of our feelings, we will give authority for our well being over to outside events and people, and go on feeling at the mercy of them. We don't know how not to do that, until we learn differently!
Here is the general principle:
It is not what others do or say that determines our feelings, it is our own thoughts and beliefs that create a particular thinking pattern, or belief-created-energy-field, that triggers our feelings.
There's even research that points to exactly where in the brain thought (electrical impulses) are converted to emotion: it is in the Amygdala that this process of converting thought to feeling takes place. The Amygdala is a tiny nut-shaped organ in the lower stem of the brain that takes a thought impulse and turns it into a feeling response which we then transmit out to the world, attracting to us a matching frequency of thought or happening. Feelings come from our own thoughts, always.
Now, it is true that we can experience a powerful feeling response so quick that we may think, “there was no time for thought! I didn't think anything!”
This happens because once a mental belief system is accepted as true, it is in place and, when triggered by some external happening, will automatically produce the feeling state that goes with the beliefs that have been triggered. We don't have to go through thinking the distinct set of thoughts every time necessarily. The thought pattern is encoded and sets the cycle in motion as soon as the beliefs that go with it are triggered.
Why is this good news? Because it puts each of us in charge of our emotional state, rather than being at the mercy of outside events. We can choose how to perceive a situation and that makes all the difference in the world about how we feel about it as well as how we respond to it. It allows us to take full self-responsibility, while at the same time, allowing the other person full responsibility for their own thoughts and feeling reactions! Because if they can't make me feel then I can't make them feel either!
I've got more on this topic coming next!
To learn more about this energetic understanding of how the mind works, I highly recommend my book, Guiding Principles for Life Beyond Victim Consciousness. It lays the foundation of understanding necessary to allow a radical shift in consciousness that facilitates us in moving from seeing ourselves at the mercy of what others do and say, to seeing life from the perspective of peace.
You can buy my book on Amazon.com by clicking here! http://amzn.to/beyondvictim
Thank you for your support. If you like what you read and find value in this perspective, will you please help me to spread the word about my book, by reading and recommending it and also by copy and pasting the above link to your FB or Twitter pages with a recommendation that your friends read it too? I need your help in getting the word out since marketing is not my strong-suit and finances are tight, I am relying on your help (if you feel so inclined, of course!) to spread the good word! Thank you again – sincerely.