Want to try this eye-opening experiment?
Here's a simple experiment to discover how much more interesting you are, emotionally, than you ever thought!
To take part, take a big breath right now and name an emotion you’d like to feel more of this week.
Perhaps you'd like to feel more contentment, self-acceptance, connection, silliness, friendship, satisfaction, relief or wellbeing. It can be any feeling you like.
To make the choice that is most relevant to your life right now, let the circumstances of your life today help you decide what you choose. Getting quiet might help the word just come to you.
To do this, close your eyes, take a couple more deep breaths and think about a feeling you’d like to have more of this week.
Let’s say your chosen word is peace.
Next, if you’re the type who likes declarations, you might say, even out loud, ‘This week I feel more peace’.
Or if you’re the type who benefits from tangible reminders, set up a prompt to help you remember, "This week, I’m experimenting with feeling more peace."
Once you've chosen your preferred feeling and decided how to remind yourself you're doing this experiment this week, the experiment begins!
You can anticipate that this week, like every week, the circumstances of your life with evoke a range of emotions, including ones you don’t enjoy.
Whenever you are feeling one of those - be it stress, annoyance, whatever - just notice it and name it.
For example, you might notice yourself feeling annoyed. If so, just say, 'Right now, ‘I feel annoyed.’
The experiment is to then add your preferred feeling to your statement about what you feel
In the example, your new statement will be, ‘I feel annoyed. And peace’.
The annoyed part of you will argue. So take a few deep breaths, close your eyes and feel into the background of yourself for, at first, just a whiff of that peace.
And notice that your preferred feeling is there too. Just more subtle, less loud, less in the forefront.
If your chosen word is self-acceptance, your statement will be something like, ‘Right now I feel stressed… and self-acceptance.’
Close your eyes. Breath. Wait. Feel into the background.
The purpose of this exercise is to show yourself that, while we all tend to narrow our emotional experiences down to whatever single negative emotion we are having in the moment, we are simultaneously also feeling a range of better feelings too.
By consciously intending to sense a preferred feeling alongside a more challenging one, we discover we are much more complex and interesting than we knew.
We realize that we are always having a much broader emotional experience that we knew! And we can learn this through this little experiment that involves intending… and noticing for a week.
There’s a very powerful lesson in this about who you really are.
Here it is:
Our uncomfortable emotions are typically temporary ones that arise in response to human challenges occurring in the moment.
By contrast, the feelings we want more of - love, appreciation, strength, wisdom, all-is-wellness - are actually permanent states of being, part of our essential nature and always present in the background. These states are who we really are behind and beyond our human experiences.
Through this little experiment this week, you'll discover you can feel both a strong negative emotion - like fear - AND also sense a comforting feeling like wellbeing. As you reach for this dual emotional experience, you start to invite your true nature to express itself more fully in the challenges of your daily life.
It's awesome and YOU ARE AMAZING!
When we discover we can feel both ‘bad’ and ‘good’ feelings at the same time, we start to realize there's a steering wheel to our emotional life and that we can learn to use it.
We learn how to steer more consciously into feelings we like, independent of what is happening in our lives and whatever else we are feeling.
This is a level of emotional mastery that is available within you and your body will joyous leap forward to meet you in your attempt to realize it.
PS. We're talking about this and things like it in my free online Learning Community. You can join us there if you like.
PPS. An easy and comfortable way to practice using your emotional steering wheel is by listening to my Pure Sleep Now audio-recording as you fall asleep. When you're lying down. settling for the night, is the perfect time to consciously steer from the lingering stress of the day into good feeling emotions. Find that here. (Fun fact, that's my daughter, Haley, wearing the cute sleep hat in the photo on the checkout page.)
PPPS. If you like experiments like this little one, consider taking my all-time best experiment, The Big Brain Change Program. A new piece of material is delivered into your inbox every week to help you reach a specific goal by working within yourself. Find that here.
WANT MY HELP APPLYING THIS RIGHT NOW?