So many of us go through our lives believing feelings just happen to us. We think we have to wait for the happiness, connection, or inspiration to strike us at the right moment, but did you know you can actually create them on demand?
You’ve probably set some new goals and intentions as we embark on the new year, and if so, this is your work.
Join me this week as I show you how to create feelings on purpose. Because when you can do this, you can start to create the life of your dreams on purpose.
Welcome to The Widowed Mom Podcast, episode 136, Creating Feelings on Purpose.
Welcome to The Widowed Mom Podcast, the only podcast that offers a proven process to help you work through your grief, to grow, evolve, and create a future you can truly look forward to. Here’s your host, Master Certified life coach, grief expert, widow, and mom, Krista St. Germain.
Hey there, welcome to another episode of the podcast. I’m going to warn you in advance, my dog Sadie is in the office, and she is panting up a storm. So, if you hear her panting in the background, I’m sorry. But she’s been having a staring contest with a squirrel in a tree outside my window, and I’m just going to let her stay there. So, if you hear her, that’s my dog, that’s Sadie.
Here’s what I want to talk about today, and I think this is perfect for the beginning of a new year, right? Because not only can we create feelings on purpose, but when we do, we can start to create a life on purpose, and that really matters, and that’s something that I hope you’re going to get from this episode. So, a lot of us go through life believing that feelings just happen to us. So, if we aren’t feeling inspired, we think that we have to just wait until inspiration strikes, right? We just kind of sit around, and at some point, we’ll feel inspired, or maybe we aren’t feeling happy.
So, we think that if we aren’t feeling happy that we have to wait until things around us change. Or until people around us change, or maybe we think if we aren’t feeling secure that we have to have more money, or we have to be in a relationship, or maybe even change aspects of our personality that we have to be different. But really, none of this is true. How we feel is actually caused by what we think.
So, when we understand that, we don’t have to wait for feelings to happen to us anymore. We can actually create them with our thoughts, right? We can create them on demand, on purpose. So, how you’re feeling right now is being created by how you’re thinking right now. Maybe you’re feeling annoyed because you’re thinking she’s full of crap, maybe you’re feeling hopeful because you’re thinking maybe this could help me, maybe you’re feeling bored because you’re thinking, yeah, I already know this, thoughts cause feelings.
Whatever you’re feeling in this moment didn’t just happen to you; it was caused by a sentence in your mind. And if you’re creating your own emotional experience now, that means that you can do it in the future, right? So, let’s play with this a little bit. First, I want you to ask yourself, what is it that I want to feel, and why? What’s the emotion that I want to feel, and why. And let me give you some examples, and then before we’re done with this episode, you’re going to pick an emotion that you’d like to experience. You’re going to figure out what thought you need to practice thinking in order to create that emotion for yourself, right? So, you’re going to walk away knowing how to do this and having something to practice.
So, first, what is it that you want to feel, and why? Maybe it’s because you know that your feelings drive your actions, and there are certain actions you want to take, there are certain things you want to do. So, you want to feel a feeling for the purpose of getting yourself to take action. Maybe that’s what’s happening. So, maybe you want to ask for a raise, you want to take that action of asking for a raise, maybe you want to start dating again, maybe you want to not yell when your kids fight, and you know that in order for you to behave differently you’re going to need to feel differently because of feelings fuel behaviors.
So, let’s break them down one at a time. So, let’s say you want to ask for a raise. I’m going to offer some emotions and thoughts that work for the purpose of illustration. But by no means are you limited to the thoughts and feelings that I am about to offer you, right? Many thought combinations can be very effective, so you will have to try them all and see what feels good. But let’s say you want to ask for a raise, and so, knowing that feelings fuel behavior, if the behavior you want to change is that you want to ask for a raise, how would you need to be feeling? Maybe you need to be feeling confident, and if you felt confident, you would ask for a raise, okay. So, when we’re doing this, it’s really like reverse engineering we’re just asking ourselves—Kind of like putting a puzzle together. We’re saying, okay, if I want to do this, I need to feel that. And if I want to feel that, I need to think this.
So, if I want to ask for a raise, I need to feel confident, and if I want to feel confident, I need to think of something that generates confidence in my body. So, maybe you could think, you know, I am adding a lot of value to our team, go above and beyond in my role, consistently over-deliver, or I would love to have me as an I’m an amazing employee. You would try on thoughts until you find one that creates the emotion that you want to fuel the action you want to take. Because thoughts cause feelings, and feelings drive actions.
So, what if you wanted to start dating again, not that you should, by the way, or that your life will be any better if you do, or that there’s something wrong with you if you don’t. This comes up a lot for widows. So, maybe the action you want to take is to start dating again. Okay. How would you need to be feeling to start dating again? Maybe you would need to feel brave, maybe you would need to feel open-minded, maybe you would need to feel curious, right? Maybe you would want to feel excited, you get to choose. You pick the emotion that would fuel that action, and then you find a thought that would create that feeling for you on purpose.
So, let’s say you want to feel brave, right? Brave is only required when fear is present. That’s the only reason we need it. So, maybe a thought that would make you feel brave would be something like, I can bring fear with me, and create this dating profile. I can bring fear with me and go out on a date. I can bring fear with me and put myself out there again. Fear is not a problem for me. Fear is supposed to be a part of this experience. I’m a badass like I can feel whatever this requires of me, right? Maybe you want to feel open and maybe what would help you feel open is the thought. The worst that can happen is a feeling, and I can feel any feeling. Do you get the idea?
You think something that creates a feeling. You feel something that fuels an action. Maybe the action you want to take the behavior that you want to change is that you want to not yell anymore. You want to stay soft-spoken, right? Maybe you want to enforce the consequence, but you don’t want to lose your cool. And maybe you’re used to losing your cool or yelling, but this time you don’t want to. So, what would you need to be feeling emotionally to help you enforce the consequence but not lose your cool to help you stay soft-spoken and not yell?
Well, maybe you want to feel calm, maybe you want to feel grounded, and what would you need to think to feel that way? A thought that works for me is nothing they can say or do can make me yell. Nothing they can say or do can take away my calm, right? Just because they misbehave doesn’t mean I have to show up in ways that I don’t like. Just because they yell doesn’t mean I have to. Their emotions aren’t my problems to solve. You get to choose it, and how we know if we’re barking up the right tree is that we tried on the thought, we think it, and we see how it feels in our body. And a thought that might feel amazing to me, right, and a thought that might make me feel calm might not be a thought that makes you feel calm.
A thought that might make me feel confident might not be a thought that makes you feel confident, and that’s okay. What matters is that we know that we are in charge of our own emotions. We can create them with our own thinking, and then we keep playing around until we find thoughts that help us feel the way we want to. So, that’s how you do it if you want to start changing the way you feel because you want to get yourself to take a different action. So, maybe you know that your feelings drive your actions, and your actions produce your results, right? That’s the next step, and you want to create a result that you’ve never created before.
I was just coaching one of my clients inside Mom Goes On, so this is pretty fresh in my mind. So, she wanted to create an experience where she was okay not being in another relationship. Still, currently, she’s dating, right? So, the action that she wanted to take was that she wanted to tell the person she’s been dating that she wants a break and actually keep it, right? Because when they’ve had these conversations in the past, he immediately comes back to her, and he basically doesn’t want to lose her, right?
So, he starts throwing her all these reasons about why she should stay. So, she wanted to tell him that she wants a break and be firm. Even when he’s telling her that she’s making a mistake, and she wants to start investing her time in getting to know herself outside of a relationship, right? And she’s a widow, right? Many people don’t think they can coach with me unless they’re widowed and solo parenting, but that is not true. Just so you know, many widows are dating again that come and join the program. So, she’s a widow, and the result she wants to create is being okay, not being in a relationship, right? To kind of get to know herself.
So, how does she need to feel in order to really hold that boundary firm to tell him, hey, I don’t want to date anymore? You’re not the person for me. I love you, but we’re done, and then stick with it. And, of course, there are quite a few different emotions that would probably serve her here. But what we came up with is committed, determined, decided. That’s the family of emotion that would really serve her here. So, let’s say that’s you maybe you want to feel committed, maybe you want to feel determined or decided so that you can take the action that you want to take and not go back on it.
Okay, so, that’s what you want to feel then, we just reverse engineer. What do you need to think? For her, I know what’s best for me, even if he doesn’t agree. This is what’s right for me. I’m doing what’s best for me. Now, that might not make you feel committed. So, what would make you feel committed? You figure that out for yourself, right? You try on some different thoughts, and you find one, so we can create feelings on demand for the purpose of taking different actions. We can create feelings on-demand to create different results. Sometimes we just want to create different feelings because we just want to feel that way. We just like the experience of the emotion itself. Maybe you just like how it feels in your body. Maybe you want to feel amazed. That’s one of my favorite emotions; amazed, right?
It’s like looking through the world with childlike eyes, and everything feels sparkly and new and fascinating. I love that feeling in my body of amazement. Maybe you want to feel connected, maybe you want to feel love, right, whatever you want to feel just because when it’s there, it feels good in your body. So, let’s say you want to feel amazed. I remember practicing this on the way back from coach training, and I just remember looking at the world through completely different eyes. Just being absolutely fascinated with everything. I was just thinking this is a miracle. I have worked in aviation for a decade, right, and I still remember just being completely fascinated with how a cylinder made out of aluminum could fly through the sky. Like just literally being like, this is a miracle, this is amazing, this is crazy, this is nuts, how awesome is this, right, creating my own sense of amazement.
Just thinking about how amazing it was that I had just gotten to spend this time and made all of these friends and learned all of these tools and how only a year before my husband had died. Right, I just literally got myself amazed with my brain, right? This is so good, this is nuts, this is a miracle, this is crazy, in the best possible way. And I felt amazed, right? Maybe you want to feel connected? I used to love to do this, and sometimes I still do, but now I don’t have to work at it. It just kind of comes naturally. I really wanted to feel connected to Jugo after he died, right? I didn’t. I wanted to.
So, what do you have to think to feel connected, right? He’s with me, he’s here, I can feel him. Those are thoughts. Those aren’t observations that we’re making. Those are thoughts we’re choosing to think that create the emotional experience of connection. And p.s. we can also do that with ourselves, right? Because some of us think that if we want to feel connected, we need to feel connected to someone else, but that’s not true, right? We can feel connected to ourselves, and many of us aren’t doing this on a regular basis. This came up in Mom Goes On recently, where one of the women had done a tapping exercise. The tapping exercise mentioned that if you were feeling lonely, that was an indication that you were craving connection.
Of course, she heard that it means you want to be in another relationship. That means you want to be with someone else. So, sometimes that’s what we think, right? If we’re feeling lonely, then the answer is to look outside of us for connection. But connection can be felt within us. That’s where it comes from. It comes from our thoughts, right? And when you’ve been in relationships where you’re not feeling connected, you’re actually feeling quite lonely because of what’s happening in your mind. There could be another person right there with you, laying next to you, in fact, and you might still feel lonely.
So, the answer to feeling connected, of course, is thinking. But it’s not always even thinking about someone else. You’re thinking about yourself, right? So, how do you think in ways that help you feel connected to yourself? Something like, I got me, right? I’m listening, I’m with you, I’m here, I know what I want, I matter, right. And then, you start feeling connected to yourself, which is also a lovely feeling. Maybe you want to feel love; love feels fantastic. So, what do you need to think to generate that feeling of love in your own body? I love them, she’s amazing, I love her, I love me, I am amazing, life is amazing, this is amazing, right, I love this, I love you.
When I say I love you at the end of every podcast, I feel love because I genuinely think about you. Some of you I’ve never even met, but I say it for you, but I also say it for me because I love the way it feels when I say it. I love loving you. Isn’t it crazy? You have the ability to do that with your brain. You can think thoughts that create feelings simply because that’s the feeling you want to have. You are the creator of this life, this precious life. You have the ability to not only choose your response to anything you encounter but to create your emotional experience. You can create an emotion for yourself just because.
Maybe you want to take a different action, maybe you want to create a different result, whatever, maybe you just want to feel that feeling, you just like how it feels. But please don’t wait for emotions to happen to you. I want you to choose to see yourself as the powerful creator of your own emotional experience, okay. And right now, remember I said before you turn off the episode, I want you to pick one emotion that you want to create today, right? What is it? Maybe it’s determined, brave, joyful, calm, or hopeful, maybe it’s curious, or maybe it’s amazed. Maybe it’s like awestruck. I don’t know. It doesn’t matter. Just pick one. Do you have it? Okay, no, really, you got it? Write it down, remember it, alright.
Now, what would a person who’s feeling that emotion be thinking? What’s going through that person’s mind that’s generating that emotional experience? This is where sometimes imagination helps, okay? So, even if you’re like, hell, I don’t know, think about it. Imagine a person in a movie who’s feeling that feeling. What are they thinking that would make them feel that way? And then, try that thought on. How does that thought feel to you? What do you feel when you think that thought? And when you do it, you’re not looking outside of your body; you’re looking inside of your body. You are thinking the thought, then, you’re checking with your body. Your eyes aren’t going up to the sky. They’re going to come down into your body.
Think the thought, feel the feeling. Okay? Now, go practice that. Go practice creating that feeling on purpose. When you get good at this, it will change your whole world. I swear. It’s such a powerful thing to do. So, go try to do it five or ten times today. So, you can really get the hang of it. This is one of the first skills I will work with you on and teach you inside Mom Goes On. Whether you like it or not. I will make sure that you learn it. I will teach it to you because I want you to be able to create those feelings on purpose.
When you learn how to create your feelings on purpose, you know how to take action on purpose, and when you take action on purpose, you know how to create any result on purpose. And what are the results that you want to create, right, in order to love life again? You don’t want to settle for this new normal business that you didn’t ask for. You don’t want to go through life with a meh, hollow, empty, robotic, blah, right? You want to feel alive. You want to chase big dreams and big goals because they matter to you, and learning how to create feelings on purpose is a really important part of that.
That’s what I have for you this week. I love you, and I feel really good when I say that. I love you, and you’ve got this, alright? Take care. I’ll see you next week, bye-bye.
If you like what you’ve been hearing on this podcast and want to create a future, you can truly get excited about even after the loss of your spouse, I invite you to join my Mom Goes On coaching program. It’s small group coaching just for widowed moms like you, where I will help you figure out what’s holding you back and give you the tools and support you need so you can move forward with confidence. Please don’t settle for a new normal that’s less than you deserve. Go to coachingwithkrista.com and click work with me for details and next steps. I can’t wait to meet you.