You Feel Your Thoughts
You think your thoughts. Right? Nope.
You feel your thoughts.
A thought is a transient mental sentence you say to yourself inside your mind. What follows is a story or impression about your thought. The result is a feeling or sensation in your body that is evoked in response to your story.
In other words, your thoughts evoke feelings. This is why it is often said that you feel your thoughts.
It is important to understand how this mechanism operates in you, so you are more aware that your thoughts—and the feelings that follow—do not happen to you. Rather, they are created within you and by you. The tricky part is that this sequence happens fast and is often unconscious and subtle.
If you are not aware of how this process works, you might mistakenly believe that outside or external circumstances are responsible for your feelings. Your life unfolds in the feeling of your own thinking.
Here is an everyday example of how it works:
You start thinking you need a new car, so you notice other cars that you like, the color, shape and all the new gadgets you could get. You start dreaming of a new car in your mind and, as a result, you feel excitement. Soon you start noticing how your old car is not as comfortable, dirty, and has a few scratches. You start to feel unhappy driving your old car. Without realizing it, you are living in the story in your mind, thinking about how happy you would be with a new car and how unhappy you are with your current car.
In this example, no one outside of your own mind created your unhappiness with your current car. You did this because you started feeling bad about your current car. You may not notice that this entire scenario happened inside your own mind.
In TED* (*The Empowerment Dynamic)® we use the acronym FISBE to name how this internal thinking-feeling system works. The F stands for your thought or what you Focus on. The IS stands for the resulting Inner State—the feelings that comes from your thoughts. The BE represents the BEhaviors or actions you choose in response to your emotions.
Why does this matter?
If you are not tuned-in to the subtle nature of how this phenomenon happens, you are at risk of giving your power away to outside circumstances. Suddenly you wake up one day and realize you have felt powerless most of your life. This is the origin of how we humans get stuck in the Dreaded Drama Triangle (DDT) roles of Victim, Persecutor, and Rescuer, attempting to manage our uncomfortable feelings about what is happening “out there.”
When you understand that your experience of life comes from your own mind, you are no longer at the mercy of outside events. You deeply know that another thought is just around the corner if you choose to take full responsibility for your thinking.
Just because you understand how the FISBE operates inside you does not mean life will always be goodness and light. Problems will still happen, and negative feelings will surface. But now you understand how your focus (your thoughts) evoke feelings and that it all happens inside of you. Taking full responsibility for your thinking now makes sense. As this epiphany takes root inside your psyche you will become more adept at noticing how your feelings immediately change in response to a more motivating thought.
There is only one thing that really gets you stuck—your own thinking. And, in the very next moment, you can create a different and more inspiring thought!
February 18, 2022 @ 9:26 am
I read your first TED book in 2006. In fact, I have a copy with Dave’s signature. (Got it in Carmel at a Noble Purpose gathering.) I still have the notes, including FISBE and how it works. Then, over the years, I forgot the causal chain so well laid out in the book. So, this morning I had an email from you and read the above article. It re-awakened me.
Thanks again, Dave and Donna, for doing your best to bring love and light into the world.