When feelings cause thoughts…

So one thing that I’m finding hard is that I think many times emotions cause thoughts. You have the bodily sensation first and then a thought comes in response to that feeling.

For example, last week I had a cold. My body sensations were tired and achy, my emotional state was sadness. Those feelings and body sensations then led me to think things like, “I can’t do my work today”, “I just want to lay in bed”, etc. Sure those thoughts then caused other feelings.

Another example: My son likes to surprise me by jumping out at me and saying ‘boo’. The first thing that happens is a rush of fear through my body. There is no thinking. The situation bypasses my thinking brain and my body activates quickly into an emergency response. The thinking comes second.

This also shows up when we have old unprocessed memories that flood our system with feelings before we’ve had a chance to think. These can be small things. e.g. if we’re scared of dogs because we were once attacked by a dog, we see a big barking dog and the feeling of fear floods our mind before any thought has a chance to form in our mind. Sure after the initial flood of feelings, we will then have thoughts. But an old unprocessed fear floods our mind first before thoughts get a look in.

So whilst I get that thoughts can cause feelings, I think it’s way too simplistic to say all feelings are caused by thoughts.

Look forward to your thinking. Thanks!