We all love to feel good. In fact, most of what we do (and don’t do) is because of how we think it will make us feel.
But feeling good in the moment isn’t just about this one moment in front of us, it’s about the life that we are creating, the whole of it. Through our beliefs, through our actions, and through who we are being (our feelings), we are creating our future. If you want a better future than the one you have today, there is no better prescription than to feel good now.
Sometimes that seems like the hardest thing to do. In today’s blog and future ones, I’ll cover how to feel better in the moment, but first I’m going to focus on why it’s so important.
The Relationship Between Beliefs, Thoughts, and Feelings
The coach who trained me, Brooke Castillo, has identified a model that can help us understand the relationship between thoughts and feelings. Brooke didn’t create it, rather, she found it. It’s just a universal truth. It works like this:
There’s a circumstance, some situation, and you have a reaction to it. Now many of us will just say that the circumstance caused us to feel a certain way. Let’s say, for example, your governor said you must wear masks in stores. That’s a circumstance.
Let’s say that two co-workers, Ronnie and Deja, are watching the news while on a break. They both hear the governor’s new order. Ronnie gets angry, but Deja is smiling.
Hmm… if they had different responses to the governor’s action, maybe it’s not the governor who’s making them feel something. That’s right. It’s not the governor. It’s their thoughts.
Ronnie might think “The governor doesn’t have the right to tell me what to do.”
Deja might think, “It makes me feel safe when people have to wear masks.”
It’s Ronnie and Deja’s specific thoughts, not the governor, that are making them feel angry or happy.
Next, Ronnie complains about the governor on Facebook and Deja posts a picture of her family wearing masks while cutting a birthday cake. These actions came from their feelings. Ronnie tells other about it when he’s angry. For Deja, she likes to spread her joy when she’s happy.
The CTFAR Model
Brooke calls this the CTFAR model. There’s a Circumstance and then you have a Thought about it. That Thought causes a Feeling. And then, when you’re feeling a particular way, you Act. Your Actions then create the Results that you experience in this world.
The CTFAR model shows us that our thoughts give rise to our feelings. So, if you want to change your feelings, change your thoughts. That’s how it works. But changing those thoughts can be hard. I won’t focus on that in today’s blog. I just want to get across that feelings arise from thoughts.
And our thoughts, they often come from beliefs. Beliefs are really just thoughts that we’ve practiced repeatedly until they’ve become engrained. They are so well-practiced that we don’t notice them or question them. Our beliefs are the water we swim in. Just as a fish is not aware of water, we often are aware of beliefs. They are just the way things are.
Now, before 2020, Ronnie never thought about what he would think when the governor told him he had to wear a mask. But from Ronnie’s beliefs, we could have predicted that he’d have that thought. Ronnie has a firm belief in individual liberty.
The same goes for Deja. She’d never really thought much about masks before. But if you knew Deja believes people should be responsible to each other, you might guess how she’d react to the mask requirement. She doesn’t mind because it’s consistent with her worldview.
Ronnie and Deja’s respective beliefs about individual liberty and social responsibility gave rise to their thoughts.
How We Create Our Reality
One way that we create our reality is through the actions that we take. You can see from the above illustration how our beliefs and thoughts give rise to our feelings, which give rise to our actions and the results we create.
There’s an even more potent way that we create reality, however. The Law of Attraction teaches us that like attracts like. When we are being that which we want to attract, we will draw it to us.
What do I mean by “being?”
Our being comprises our beliefs, thoughts, and feelings. What we are emanating is who we are being. If there is something we want, the most efficient way to gain it is to resonate with it. Thoughts and feelings are energy. They are like magnets. They draw situations and objects that have resonant energy.
Why Feelings Matter
Feelings are supremely important of their own accord. They also bring great value because they make us aware of our thoughts and beliefs. You can easily see this by looking at the CTFAR equation.
Let’s say Ronnie sees the news at home and then he almost snaps at his daughter. He might question what happened. His daughter’s question was innocent enough, so why was he angry? Maybe it was the news, or rather a thought that the news inspired.
Yes. That was it. The masks are coming back. He thought about the injustice of it. That’s what had him mad, not his daughter.
When we get in touch with those thoughts, we can start questioning them and what they are creating in our lives. We can start identifying the beliefs underneath our thoughts and challenge them if we want to. And then we can change our thoughts if we want to.
In this case, Ronnie might not want to make any changes. Individual liberty is important to him. Even so, he can see how everything is inter-related. He can gain insight into his actions toward his daughter.
The Importance of Feeling Good
When we are trying to create our own reality, when we’re trying to draw to us the things we want, we need to become a master at our emotions. We need to tap into our feelings and to cultivate the feelings consistent with what we are trying to create.
In Ronnie’s case, one of his highest priorities is creating a loving environment for his family. His awareness of his thoughts and feelings could cause him to switch focus. Forget the news and pay attention to his daughter. See that she just wanted her shoe tied. Maybe even chose to no longer watch the news in the evening because it gives rise to many challenging thoughts. By focusing on his daughter’s needs, he cultivates better thoughts and feelings. That puts him in better alignment with his goal of being a loving father and creating a harmonious home life.
The feeling that we are emanating in this current moment is the soil that will give rise to our future reality. If we’re serious about manifesting our dreams, then our highest priority should be to feel good in the present moment.
This isn’t just a superficial feel good prescription. Abraham-Hicks talks about plastering a smily face sticker over your gas gauge. It’s a drag to see that your tank is running low. But of course, you need to know that so you can fill the tank.
So, I’m not talking about faking your way into contentment with empty affirmations. Find genuine reasons for joy and happiness. I talk more about that below and in my previous article, Feeling is the Real Secret.
In that article, you’ll find the Emotional Scale (also from Abraham-Hicks). This is a list of feelings ranging from Love/Appreciation/Freedom at the highest point on the scale down to Depression/Fear/Grief at the lowest. Use the Emotional Scale to determine your current point of attraction: what you are feeling in this moment? Then, make it your goal to rise up the scale to a better feeling point.
Raising Your Vibration
Here are two fast techniques to raise your vibration in the moment. We can also use these as daily practices.
Look around and find things to appreciate. For example, I see my favorite pen, a beautiful lamp I borrowed from my parents, my “Make It Work” reminder I stuck to my computer. A wonderful regular process is to pick a person or a topic (say chatting with customer service) and challenge yourself to list twenty positive attributes about it.
Observe with No Judgment
I love to do this activity while I’m on a walk. The practice is to just observe your surroundings with playful curiosity.
Consider a leaf on the sidewalk and observe it. Pretend you don’t know the name for it. You’re like an alien and you don’t know what it is. It is no longer a “leaf” because putting it in the same category of all leaves doesn’t allow you to see this particular leaf. What’s unique about this one? It’s curled up. It’s several shades of green. It has these little seed things on it. You might make up a name for this particular leaf. Take in everything you see as if you’re seeing it for the first time. Move beyond the judgment inherent in labels and just witness.
I’m Dr. Kira Swanson and I’m a Life Coach for people who dread Monday. I work with senior leaders who feel unfulfilled in their work. Together, we tune into what they really want, find new perspectives, and summon the courage to take bold action. Whether it’s striking out on their own, landing in a new job, or thriving right where they are, I help them to Love Monday.
I can help them to wake up to the possibilities. I remind them of who they really are so that they can shake off the veil that has kept them blind. I show them how they can be a creative manifestor — the creator of their own reality. This sparks the transformation they need to become unstuck, tap into limitless energy, and create the reality they want to experience.
If you’d like to find out how you’ve been limiting yourself and how you can embrace the boundless creator within you instead, let’s chat: just set up a free Discovery Session.