If I’m feeling good about life, life is good. Probably.
If I’m feeling scared and anxious about life, it must be bad. Not necessarily.
I don’t like the way this feels so I need to get out of here. Always if you are in real danger.
Although they should be heeded in making decisions, feelings are subjective and not definitive. And when driven by fear, feelings are the number one “fact” we often use to offer proof to ourselves that we fear is true. But feelings are not facts.
We all have moments of fear ranging from fearful to frightened to terrified with a full on anxiety attack. Our thought comes first and then we begin to consider its validity but most likely not after we’ve had an auto feeling in response. We’re wired for flight or flight remember. Our mistake can be in thinking that because we have the fearful thought and response first, that is proof enough that we shouldn’t do whatever. Or that we’re not worthy or ready. But the feeling isn’t fact. And the only way to truly think ourselves through these moments is consciousness, awareness, and mindfulness. Only we can sort through our thoughts to the truth.
As children, we aren’t taught mindfulness or the power to give and control the energy and validity of our thoughts. We are not given the power to logically refute our monkey minds when they say,”It’ll always be this horrible way” by then saying, “It may sometimes be like this but most likely it will not Always be this way”. Instead, we re taught to blame someone else. He did it to me. I am always getting the short stick. It will always be that way. And armed with our negative mindset, we will make sure this always happens. Power of suggestion is powerful indeed.
Anxiety is the number one mental illness in human beings. And I venture to say it’s pretty common in other animals as well. But it never did anyone a lick of good. Created as an auto-response to keep us alive, it is now mostly being wrongly used to ruin our lives. I have found that when I begin to spin in my head thinking about how I’ll always this or forever that, I need to stop myself and address it and refer back to my skill set to get myself out. And foremost, I must recognize that the strong feelings that might go with these thoughts are just a natural product of my fear but do not substantiate and confirm the feelings I may be having. They’re just a nice try by my monkey mind to create a little havoc and fun.
ps. See my post on Cognitive Distortions to truly understand how much we mess with ourselves on believing untruths. And read the other piece I wrote on this same subject here.
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So true! Lately I’m really playing with quality of thoughts I choose to think about my world. Choose your thoughts and change your world.
Thank you so much Heather for taking the time to read and ponder my thoughts today. I sooo appreciate it. And yes, this mindfulness stuff is hard work.
As a person who has always lived with anxiety, this was a helpful post. My mantra is, “In the scheme of my life, how important is it to worry about this?” Doesn’t always work, but perspective can help a lot.
By the way, the photos on your blog are spectacular.
Always with the Anxiety yes! And then I finally found a resource that changed my view of what I could do about it. Feeling Good : The New Mood Therapy by David Burns. Wow! I said where has this book been all my life, not that I’d been ready for it until then. And feeling so empowered has made me want to share how I make sense and get comfort from the insights I’ve received. So thank you Miss Mala for letting me know that it made even a small difference. And thank you for your compliment on my pictures. It’s all in the editing I promise. And it was a goal I had to improve my blog so I’m glad it’s working!!!