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Having Happy Thoughts

By Guest Author On February 10, 2011 Under Improve Your Life, Self Help Tips, Self Improvement, Setting Goals

Pause for a moment. What were the thoughts running through your head just now? How did that thought make you feel?

It is very important that we realize the relationship between our thoughts and the way we feel. Did you know that we are constantly thinking? Take breathing for example. Unless we feel that we are running out of breath, we simply forget that we breathe automatically.

Thinking works the same way. Since we are always doing it, it is easy to forget that it is happening. To think is to create. Everything starts in the mind. What happens first before the feeling of anger sets in? Angry thoughts precede anger. Have you tried getting mad without having any thoughts first? Try to feel sad without sad thoughts. It is just not possible! In order to experience a feeling, we must first have the thought that induces that feeling. Happiness cannot exist alone. It is the result of positive thinking. This simple awareness is the first step in putting us back on the path to find the key to happiness.

We should never underestimate the power of a simple thought. It may seem so innocent and fleeting; yet, it has energy that can cause great impact on our mind, body, and emotions.

Let us think of a lemon. Imagine cutting it in half and smelling it. Now, think about squeezing the juice from the lemon into your mouth and feel those pulp bits bursting inside your mouth. Most of us will surely feel our salivary glands responding to the thought of lemon.

Indeed, what we are thinking can greatly influence our emotions. Think of someone you love. What do you feel? Now think of someone you hate. What do you feel? We do not have to consciously change our emotions – change the direction of our thoughts and our emotions will follow immediately . Notice that when we focus our minds on positive things, we feel good, whereas when think negative thoughts, we feel bad. Positive thoughts yield positive results. These thoughts make us more loving and caring, resulting to good health, wealth, and happiness. On the other hand, negative thoughts produce negative results. These types of thoughts result to indifference, disease, fear and misery, etc. In other words, our thoughts create our reality. So be sensitive to your thoughts. The next time you feel a little low, stop and consider what you were thinking to trigger that feeling and change it accordingly. It’s not going to happen immediately but with practice, we can control the direction our thoughts take.

Wouldn’t it be great if we can have good thoughts throughout the day?

However, that is just not possible, is it? The negative thoughts have a way of slipping in under our noses throughout the day. Negative thinking can kill just like a cancer! It can destroy and kill our whole future. Negative thoughts affect the mind, body, and emotions.

Our thoughts produce our feelings. We get angry by having angry thoughts. It is impossible to feel sad without sad thoughts. Unhappiness does not and cannot exist on its own. Unhappiness come with negative thinking. So how do we dislodge the negative thoughts in our heads? Stop thinking about them! Our negative feelings are results of our own negative thinking. Apart from refraining to think about negative thoughts, we can turn negative thoughts into positive ones.

One effective technique is to learn a whole new set of happy words. These words evoke positive feelings. Other studies refer to these as “Positive Adjectives List” from The Apache Method (The Antidotal Positive Adjectives Character and Happiness Enhancement Method).

According to this particular study, which is based on Emmet Velton’s classic paper, “There has been a body of research empirically validating our ability to positively or negatively change our moods by reading phrases like “I feel very good” or “I am afraid.”

So, how do we go about dislodging thoughts of unhappiness?

1. Be aware. We have to catch ourselves when we are about to indulge in negative thinking. In the first few days, we have to be very vigilant.

2. The moment we feel the onset of an unpleasant emotion, we have to identify it as precisely as possible. Is it hatred? Hurt? Fear? Anxiety? Discontent? This is a very critical component of the process as related to the next step.

3. Search for the exact opposite of the negative emotion. Think of its antonym. For example, the moment we catch ourselves feeling “lazy,” we would call to mind an opposite adjective like ‘energetic.’ We would then say to ourselves, ‘I feel energetic. ‘ If we consider ourselves as “pessimistic”, we say “I am hopeful. ”  If we feel we are “incompetent’, we say “I feel ingenious.” What do we say if we see ourselves as “unmindful”? We say, “I am grateful. ” Can we use the same method even if we are not feeling anything unpleasant? Of course!  We are encouraged to think and say to ourselves statements like ‘I feel fabulous’ to reinforce our mood, or statements like ‘I feel strong’ or ‘I feel friendly’ in order to enhance our character. Other people have their own versions of this same technique. Others say it aloud in front of the mirror every morning for ten minutes for twenty-one days. Saying it out loud increases its effectiveness as it represents an emotional involvement. This is the same as saying positive affirmations and doing self-talk. Others think it’s more effective to write the statements on paper, as they become more involved “physically”. 

Try it out. It doesn’t matter which way you choose to use. The important thing is to be aware of the direction your thoughts are going and change it. You’ll see a brighter, more positive you emerge and well on your way to finding the way to happiness.

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