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Thanks Insta – I feel better

Rebecca Blackburn Life coachWe’re gonna get down and dirty today. We’re discussing something that will make your skin crawl.

It’s time to dig down deep and discover what you’ve been “pushing down deep” for a long time.

You’ve been shoving these things under the rug for so long, it looks like a dead body has taken up residence.

Do you know what we are discussing? Give up? Today, we’re talking about Feelings. Yikes!

Don’t be afraid. This is actually my favorite thing to talk about. You know why? Because we’re not supposed to. Well, unless they’re good. But even then, some people are put off by that.

Doesn’t it feel like we are always supposed to be happy and positive? This world of Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest…it’s full of positive quotes and words that are encouraging us to keep going and keep our chin up. I get it. And I like it. I love a good kick in the butt when I am feeling defeated or moving slow. But sometimes, the words of encouragement don’t do the trick. And why aren’t we allowed to feel like shit for a moment? Why do we always have to shove it under the rug and push it down deep? Clearly, we all have these feelings or there wouldn’t be so many encouraging posts on social media.

Let’s dig in. Get your glasses on. You’re about to get schooled.

The first thing you need to know is what a feeling actually is.

Feelings or emotions are vibrations in our bodies that are caused by what you think. They start in our brain (by our thoughts) then we experience them in our body.

This is different than a sensation. A sensation is involuntary and starts in the body. Such as being cold, hot, pressure, and pain.

You might think a feeling is also involuntary, but that is incorrect. How do you feel about that?

Let me give you an example.

I like to use parenting to explain this because it’s the toughest area for me. Sometimes my feelings really do feel involuntary when my children do or don’t do what is expected.

Example 1: Tuesday morning before school, my kids woke up with great attitudes, used kind words, got themselves ready, ate breakfast, and we got in the car at the right time to get to school. I was on cloud 9. I praised my kids and felt so happy. I was set for the day!

Example 2: Wednesday morning before school, one kid woke up complaining about school, the other woke up complaining about clothes. I had to drag one out of bed and dress them, shove food in their mouth, argue about what they were taking for a snack while the other sat back and tried to parent me on my parenting. I was exhausted and irritated. By the time they got out of the car, I had to get on Instagram and find me a motivational quote for the day.

Do either of these sound familiar?

It seems like my kid’s actions and behavior are obviously what set the mood for the day. One day I felt happy and the other day I felt irritated. However, it was actually my thoughts about my kid’s behavior that caused me to feel happy or irritated.

Let me break it down further.

When my kids were using kind words and getting out of the house on time, my thoughts looked something like this — “This is so nice. My kids really love each other. They are so well behaved. I must be doing something right. Mornings are my favorite”. These thoughts created a feeling of joy in my heart.

When my kids are telling me they don’t like school and they refuse to get dressed, my thoughts looked like this — “Why can’t they just follow the rules? Do they love to tick me off? This is ridiculous. Do y’all not read Insta quotes? I am so tired of them acting like fools.” These thoughts created a feeling of frustration in my soul.

Hmmm, can you see the difference? It was me all along. I am creating my own feelings. Sure it would be nice if everything went as planned and I could change my kid’s actions, but they are human and I can’t program them to be any different.

The reality is that sometimes children go rogue and they don’t do what we wish they would. Why would I expect any different? Instead of getting so worked up about the morning that didn’t go as I envisioned, I could easily have a different perspective on the morning. I could have thought “This is how some mornings are. I totally get where they are coming from. Been there, done that.” This helps me to accept the reality as it is and move on without making it mean I am a bad parent and they are bad kids.

This is where I need you to pay attention.

I am not suggesting that you immediately change your thought to “I love when my kids fight. Screaming sounds like music to my ears. Running late for work is my favorite thing.” Do not do that! Don’t change anything right now. Especially if you are making up new thoughts that you could never believe. I want you to keep your same thoughts and I want you to keep feeling irritated. Yes, that is my advice as a life coach. I need you to stop pushing this under the rug and I need you to understand the words I am telling you.

Before we can start changing our feelings or our thoughts, you have to understand the science behind it. You need to pay attention and understand that you are creating your own feelings with your thoughts. And before you change your thoughts, you have to uncover them. I bet you didn’t even know you were having these thoughts.

You guys, it’s okay that we have negative feelings. It is all part of the human experience. It’s not okay to keep covering them up and pretending they don’t exist. But instead of just having them and feeling like crap about them, let’s figure out why we are having them.

Where do we go from here?

I give you permission to feel everything. The good, the bad, and the ugly. This is the observation phase. Instead of burying them, ignoring them, or changing them, I want you to be on high alert. Notice them. That’s it.

Let’s put it to work.

I want you to make a list of feelings that are familiar to you. Pick the main feeling that you felt today. You will want to pick 3-4 feelings, but only pick one. It can be a positive or negative feeling. Write down why you felt that way. Is it because your kid got an A+ on a paper? Is it because you got a flat tire? Now write down your thoughts about them. All of your thoughts. Notice why you feel the way you do. Is this a feeling that you want to continue feeling? Is it serving you in your life?

Don’t worry, we are just getting started on this journey. If your main feeling is stressed, overwhelmed, confused, or exhausted, you are not alone. We will work on creating new thoughts and feelings in future challenges. Right now, I need you to be aware and understand why this is all happening.

Good things ahead my friend

Ready. SET. Go.

If you are interested in taking this work a step further, my SET program is exactly what you need.  Schedule a time for a consult call to learn more.

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