Beliefs,  Change Your Mindset,  Mental Health

Why You Feel Sad (Or Mad, or Irritated, or Happy, or Determined, etc.)

Photo by Kinga Cichewicz on Unsplash

Today I wanted to talk about emoooootions.  The feels.  Those pesky things that influence so much of our lives.

What I’m about to offer to you might rock your world.  Or not, maybe I’m the only one who didn’t know this and you’re a psychological genius.  Who knows?  ANYWAY, the point is, your emotions are caused by your thoughts.  Emotions don’t just happen to us by default; it only seems that way because we’ve been entertaining the same thoughts for so long.  Here’s an example: the temperature outside is 98º F.  You then make that mean something by having a thought about it.  If you live in North Dakota, you might have a thought like, “This is crazy, I can’t believe how hot it is right now.  I’m DYING!”  A person who lives in Arizona might have a thought more along the lines of, “It’s hot, but  eh, I’ve seen worse.  This isn’t actually that bad.”

See that?  The temperature outside is completely neutral.  It’s the fact in the situation above.  I like to call it the circumstance.  Everything else is the meaning that we humans assign to it, the thoughts we form ABOUT our circumstances.  And, as you can see, those thoughts are totally up for grabs.  People with different experiences will have different reactions to the same circumstance.  So, the things that happen to us are always neutral–until we add our own meaning/thoughts to them.

It’s so important that you see this.  It will change everything for you, I PROMISE.  When you put yourself out there and get rejected, or someone you love says something to you consider to be hurtful, or you get on the scale and the number is higher than you want it to be: just remember that you are the one who is responsible for how you’re feeling about those things.  The circumstances in those situations are as follows:

1. You ask someone out on a date and they say no.

2. Your husband calls you a hypocrite.

3.  You weigh (insert the number the scale reads) pounds.

YOU get to decide what you make those circumstances mean.  It’s all-at-once wonderful and overwhelming.  It means that you are responsible for your own emotions.  People don’t make you feel sad.  You cause yourself to feel sad through the thoughts you have about your conversation with them.  Of course, there are times when you may want/it’s totally fine to feel sad, like when someone you love dies, but you’re still the one who is responsible for your emotions in that scenario.  Someone dying is neutral.  Our thoughts about how much we loved them and will miss them and/or we wish they didn’t have to go so soon is what causes the feeling of sadness.  So, when you’re in a situation where you don’t WANT to feel sad anymore, just know that if you can change your thoughts, you can change your emotions.  If you are the one causing yourself to feel sad, it only logically follows that you can choose thoughts that will cause happiness, or contentedness, or determination.  And if you can change your emotions, how you act and show up in this world will start to change–and that’s when you’ll start to see the results in your life improve.

When I learned this and really started internalizing it, it changed my world.  I stopped giving other people permission to hurt me, I took back my power, and I took back responsibility for my own emotions and needs.  I’ll talk about this and keep explaining this in greater detail, so stay tuned!  For now, really think about how true this concept is and try to start applying it.  Choose thoughts/beliefs that make you show up how you want to in this world.  Choose thoughts that align with who you want to be.  And I promise, you’ll start feeling a whole lot better.

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