I watched it happen, right before my eyes – a sense of peace morphing into panic. And all because she had the nerve to say: “I’m okay. I’m good…I really am.”
“Not so fast,” replied the mind, quickly calling in reinforcements to take care of this unfamiliar feeing of well being.
“I really do feel like I’m okay,” she was thinking, pleasantly surprised by the unusual sensation of peace. “I don’t know why. Should I feel peaceful right now?”
In an instant, she went from feeling good to really not good with absolutely no idea what had happened – or how to get the good feelings back.
The errant mind was hard at work behind the scenes:
I just heard this girl say she’s good. Yeah, I don’t think so. Gotta get her back where she usually hangs out, here goes: “Wait a minute…I feel good? That does not feel familiar. Umm, I’m not used to being here. Why do I feel good? I always want to feel good, but I shouldn’t feel good right now. I haven’t felt this way before about this. I didn’t do anything to earn feeling good. Do I deserve to feel good? I can’t feel good. It doesn’t feel right to feel good. I’m not comfortable here – it’s the unknown. Oh. . . there it goes. Oh, okay well, yeah, normal again. Bad. Stressed. Scared. But . . . comfortable. Feeling good does NOT feel normal. Not sure I’ll do that again for a while.”
If you’re thinking that is messed up, you’re right. It kind of is, but it’s also super normal and the way a lot of us get by without even noticing. But WHY?!!! Why do our brains do this?! Why does MY brain do this?
For today, let’s just chalk it up to HABIT. And like so many habits, it has its way with us because we AREN’T PAYING ATTENTION. So as a starting point, we are just going to slow down and start gently NOTICING the times when, as soon as we realize we feel good, in the very next breath it’s evaporated into thin air.
You might be driving along and suddenly notice that you’re feeling an unexpected sense of peace. Or something comes up and you feel okay about it when you know that you would normally be feeling really stressed out by it. Just notice for a second that you’re feeling good, say a thank You for the lovely grace, remember that you deserve to feel good without having to do anything at all to earn it. Although it might feel out of place, well being is actually your natural state. Fear (masquerading as upset of any kind) is the imposter.
You can even say something simple, like “I feel good, and that’s okay.” It doesn’t need to be clung to or investigated. “In this moment, I feel good. This is actually how I am meant to feel in my life.”
Lately, I’ll even notice that a lovely ah-ha moment will immediately be followed by some kind of fear or trigger thought to put me back “in my place.” Or a crazy grumpy mood will follow right on the heals of a powerful morning spent with God. Remember, the fear or the negative thinking that is coming up is what doesn’t belong. The feeling of well being is what’s meant for us. It’s just been buried for so long, we don’t realize it. The more we notice this, the more the well being will begin to feel natural, as it should. The more we remind ourselves that it’s okay to feel good, the longer it will stick around and become part of our consciousness more and more all the time. We are absolutely meant to feel well, calm and peaceful.