Now you may be thinking, “what does she mean? Yes it is. It’s all over the internet that if I want to be happy, successful and achieve my dreams, I have to have positive thoughts. My problems are down to my thoughts!”
Well, I’m going to get on my soapbox a little about this subject as I feel so passionate about it. There are so many teachers and coaches out there, and so much stuff published on the internet these days, that all say the same thing – if you have problems, if you’re not happy, it is caused by your thoughts. If you just think positive thoughts then you’ll have the perfect life. You’ll achieve your goals, manifest all your dreams, and everything will be great. And if you have problems, it’s because your thinking is wrong.
No! This is not the case, and anyone who’s had the same affirmation for years and its still not happening will relate to this. What is always more important than the thoughts you are thinking, are the emotions you are feeling. The mood you are in. And emotions precede thoughts. Emotions produce your thoughts. (Most of the time.) Not the other way around.
You will have a feeling about a situation or circumstance first and then will come your thoughts. Neuro-science has proven this and modern psychology agrees that emotions come first. It is the reptilian part of our brain, the oldest part of our brain, that produces emotions. The thinking part of our brain as we know it today, in our frontal lobes, developed millions of years later.
When I realised this several years ago, it was a massive a-ha moment for me. I knew all about the Law of Attraction, the importance of keeping my vibration high and putting feeling into what I want to manifest. But I hadn’t really understood the essential steps to manifesting, until I fully realised that our emotions come first. It is a physiological fact. Your emotions come first. This is really important to remember. You’ll have a feeling about a situation or circumstance first, and then will come your thoughts. And our emotions demand more attention than thoughts. Emotions trump thoughts every time. They are far more dominant.
Now, I do agree that managing your thoughts is important, and especially negative self-talk. It’s important to manage that, and to not be so hard on yourself as that can really undermine your self-esteem, knock your confidence and make mountains out of molehills. Be careful also of rumination (I love the word rumination!). Rumination is what you do when you are thinking and pondering on your situation. What you don’t want to do is ruminate too much in a negative way.
So managing your thoughts is important but the #1 thing you MUST do, is manage your feelings. And I will share with you how to do that further down. This is why doing things like repeating affirmations and writing down goals doesn’t work for many people. Because unless your emotions are onboard, you can repeat those affirmations all you like, its not going to happen. Feelings outweigh thoughts every time. Your feelings are so important.
And this is also true of the law of attraction. Many of us are taught that what you think about you attract. However what you really attract – is what you are feeling. What you FEEL, you attract. What you feel, the mood you are in, determines what you attract. Your feelings produce your vibration, the frequency that you are vibrating on, and you attract the same vibrational match.
What do most people want? They want to be happy, they want happiness. Well what is happiness? Being happy is a feeling, it’s an emotion. You might want more peace. Peace again is a feeling. So that is what you need to be focusing on – feeling happy, feeling peaceful.
Now you might say to me ‘I cant control my feelings’, and I would have to disagree with that. Obviously there are situations when you can’t control your emotional response because it is an automatic, unconscious response. And there may be a physiological reason for not feeling happy – hormone imbalance etc. Or you may feel anxious or stressed due to your deeper beliefs. However you still do have an element of choice. You have an element of choice about how you feel, and how you want to feel.
Negative emotions are normal and natural. And its fine to have these emotions. Never beat yourself up about it. Sometimes it’s not even your stuff , sometimes we pick up other peoples negative feelings and mood. And we all need a certain amount of the negative emotions. We need a certain amount of fear so that we don’t take stupid risks, and consider our actions first. We need a certain amount of anger for momentum. When these types of emotions pop up, feel them, go into them, and then make a point of coming out of it. Don’t stay in that mood too long.
Think if it like this – if thoughts are pebbles (another word I love!), then emotions are boulders. A boulder can shift a pebble no problem – a mood can shift your thoughts, But if you want to shift that boulder, that mood you’re in, you are going to need a lot of pebbles, alot of thoughts. You can keep thinking and repeating something in your mind as much as you want but you’re not going to feel happy unless you shift that boulder.
So it’s really important to make sure your emotions are onboard, to work on having positive emotions as much as you possibly can. Go through those negative emotions, feel them and then let them go. Raise your vibration back up as soon as you can. Whenever you’re done with whatever that is.
All emotions have frequencies, and each emotion has it’s own unique frequency. So your vibration is determined by what you are feeling. According to the Scale of Consciousness that was first introduced by Dr David Hawkins, on a scale from 0 to 1000 love vibrates at 500, and enlightenment vibrates between 700 and 1000. At the other end of the scale anger vibrates at 150 and fear at just 100. So to raise your vibration, you need to work on your feelings. It’s really important! And it can be done – you always have an element of choice.
When you are feeling a particular feeling and thinking a particular thought alot, this strengthens the neural pathway in the brain that is associated with that feeling. Whichever neural pathways are strongest in the brain will determine the feelings that dominate.
Unfortunately, in many people their negative feelings dominate. The neural pathways in their brain that are associated with negative feelings are stronger. These types of people will often be feeling warnings such as “be careful”, “watch out”, “that’s scary”, “don’t do that” etc. And that is just reinforcing all the time the neural pathways associated with negative emotions. Those types of people will feel positive emotions like peace, joy and happiness from time to time, but their negative emotions will dominate because the neural pathways are stronger.
So what you need to do is make the neural pathways in your brain that are associated with good feelings stronger. If you focus on feeling good most of the time, you will strengthen those neural pathways and eventually they will dominate.
Now you may be wondering, well how do I do that? First, choose how you want to feel. What is it? Joy, love, excitement, peace, hope? Or all of those? My ‘go to’ emotion when I want to lift myself up is gratitude. and I make it part of my daily practice to feel gratitude (and really FEEL it, not just think it) several times a day. On the scale of consciousness gratitude vibrates at between 700-900 depending on the depth of the feeling you put into it. So it vibrates higher than love! That the emotion I choose when I want to lift myself up and I consciously practice feeling gratitude several times a day.
If you want to feel more happiness, joy, love, or whatever, you have to decide how you want to feel, and you have to practice it – all day long! Then you will strengthen the neural pathway in your brain associated with that feeling and it will become dominant. Now that might sound like hard work but actually it’s not because it is so much better to feel good, it’s so much more liberating to feel great and feel happy, than it is to feel miserable and pissed off.
And don’t get me wrong, I’m not being flippant here. I went through a period of depression, I know how that feels, and how helpless it can make you feel. You have to make a conscious effort to feel good. To feel good, positive emotions most of the time. Keep doing it, keep doing it. Practice, practice, practice, and then you’ll soon find that these emotions will dominate and be present most of the time. It’s that simple!
And then you’ll create a life you love because you wake up in the morning feeling great, feeling excited for your day. And most of the time during your day, you will be feeling good! Yay!
Now it is true also that your emotions, your feelings, come from your beliefs (most of the time). Where do our beliefs come from? Alot of them come from the downloads, the programming we took on when we were kids. We took on from our parents, our siblings, teachers, and society in general.
You may find that when you start choosing to have positive feelings and you practice it, that your negative beliefs get in the way. Those ones that go “that’s ridiculous”, “there’s not point in doing this”, “it won’t work for me” etc. However this is a good thing because they are coming to the forefront, you are discovering your limiting beliefs. And when you are aware of them, then you can work on clearing them.
Your emotions are much stronger than your thoughts. So you need to focus on feeling good, as much as you can. Think about it, you can ‘feel’ angry and ‘think’ love. You can be really angry with someone and still think “I love them”. But you can’t do it the other way around. It’s really difficult to feel love and think angry thoughts. You can try but it just doesn’t work. You end up laughing.
In the same way it’s difficult to think positive thoughts when you’re feeling negative, or when your self-esteem is really low, or your confidence has been knocked, or you don’t feel worthy. Thinking positive thoughts and saying positive things in your mind when you’re in this type of mood, often doesn’t work. If your feelings are not onboard you’re just going to feel like you’re arguing with yourself. The problem is your feelings, not your thoughts.
So many people are not aware of this. They have their goals, they have their dreams but their emotions are not aligned with those goals. They are not vibrating at the level they need to be to attract those things back, to manifest those goals. Then when the dream doesn’t happen, they start to give up, they start to compromise, they settle for less. They limit themselves, or start thinking that it’s not meant to be, which is a real shame.
Just remember, emotions are stronger than thoughts and therefore in many ways, they are more important than your thoughts. Choose how you want to feel. Choose which emotion you want to have dominant in your life. One that feels good to you and that you can fairly quickly get into. Like I said before, for me it is gratitude. For you it may be love or joy, hope or peace. Practice feeling this emotion all the time. Then you will strengthen the neural pathway in your brain which is associated with that feeling and it will become dominant in your mind.
That is the key to feeling good!
Love and Empowerment
Originally published at sallyellahorn.com