It’s been a common theme cropping up in many of my conversations lately. Who we are vs. how we feel. (Because, there actually is a difference)
There’s so much power in that space between. Space breeds creation because in it there is room for something new to happen.
I used to not understand this. It just didn’t compute for me that I am not “how I feel.” There was no space. There was my belonging to whatever feeling state I was in. No awareness outside of my visceral sensation, simply and just “how I felt.” I “have” depression, really meant I am victim to the sensation of whatever the label was comprised of (heaviness, sadness, existential emptiness.) I “have” anxiety really meant that I identify in a feeling state of impending doom, worry, fear, and the ever present “what if?” sensation.
What ultimately resolved my mood disorders of many were:
- an understanding of their roles in my body (“their” referring to whatever feeling state was associated with each label)
- The separation from them AS me and them as what “me” is experiencing. (I feel like that ones a bit of a mouthful but I’m confident you can pull sense from it)
Thoughts vs. Feelings
When we recognize the thoughts behind our feelings, it generally comes with a greater sense of ease in our will to change. “I feel like crap because I recognize that I’m pretty chronically telling myself that it’s just not possible/feasible/realistic for me to have what I want” That’s an identifiable story that you can change, IF you truly desire a new outcome. But what happens when you don’t recognize a thought – which is clear – but you recognize a feeling which is vague and felt and sometimes very UNclear? Well, start with how the feeling feels. I feel sad. I feel unmotivated. I feel empty. I don’t know how I feel I just feel like shit. (Ok, there ya go) And work from there. Allow it there, first. Often I would feel anxiety when I woke up in the morning and I’d go through my whole day feeling it and acting around it like it wasn’t there. Feeling so uncomfortable, just moving on autopilot throughout my day, and then I’d have this moment alone where I’d be like damn, I feel a ton of anxiety right now. (I literally sighed as I wrote this, remembering that relief.) Just being present to my experience like it’s something worthy of paying attention to creates space in me. It makes the anxiety not as pressing, because there’s a little room now. And you can’t create with that kind of pressure, but you can create when you have room. If you don’t know WHY you feel, start with how you feel.
The Space Between
When you know how you feel, there’s something really powerful you can do with that awareness. You can recognize it for what it ACTUALLY is. A sensation. Not an identity. The expression of who we are is not a fixed point. A feeling isn’t an indication of your body messing up, or misfiring, or malfunctioning. It’s the culmination of your thought life, and the experiences that have ingrained themselves within you thus far. How you feel is a barometer for… how you feel. For the state of mind/frequency you’re operating/vibrating from. Not a truth-o-meter, or a measurement of you. What it is, is actually really useful information to provide a contrast between where you are right now (or have been for a way long time) and where you want to be.
The no-space-at-all, compounded with a total lack of understanding… this was the most fear-inducing part for me! When I believed that my brain was faulty, and my genes were set, it was maddening and dreadfully disempowering. But there is a new story ladies. You are not how you feel yourself to be. You are the awareness, the observer, the seat of consciousness behind it all. There’s no wasted space in this perception. When you are living out of this separated, elevated “seeing” you can really begin to go to work on changing how you feel. This is where utilizing the 5 pillars of your Mental Wellness can go from inspiring you, to transforming you. Food, Movement, and your ability to Express all work to influence how you feel. It all begins with Mindset, and it is held together by Community. I write more in depth about each of these Pillars in my Mental Illness to Mental Wellness (free!) e-Book, so gift yourself some feel-good here. Because once we understand why we feel (fill in the blank), once we know we’re not how/what we feel, and that our sensations are not random but created from how we go about perceiving our life’s experience, we have the freedom to set about changing that experience with a greater drive. A conscious awareness, that in itself begins to set our lives in a different motion. We have the desire to uplevel our frequency. And that is my joy to share with you today, and continuously.
In so much love and all the feel-goods,