I have a question for you…
Okay, maybe it’s more like a quiz.
Do you think our EMOTIONS come first and THEN our thoughts?
Do our THOUGHTS come first and THEN our emotions?
I have spent a lot of time and done a lot of research trying to figure out if it was our thoughts or emotions that came first, because I’ve had many moments in my life where I’ve had emotions that were so painful and excruciating. I just kept wondering, “Where is this coming from?” Or I would ask myself and Heavenly Father if I had any power at all over the feelings and emotions that I was experiencing.
If you said it is our thoughts that create our emotions, you are right!!
THAT’S INCREDIBLE NEWS!!
That means you have power over your emotions—isn’t that something worth celebrating?!
It means you have power over both your thoughts and emotions.
President Packer: “Probably the greatest challenge to people of any age, particularly young people, and the most difficult thing you will face in mortal life is to learn to control your thoughts. As a man ‘thinketh in his heart, so is he.’ (Proverbs 23:7.) One who can control his thoughts has conquered himself.”
This is why I’m a HUGE fan and believer in positive affirmations. The more positive thoughts you can fill your mind with, the easier it will be for those positive thoughts to be your first instinct when in any situation.
By the way, if you haven’t heard of a positive affirmation before, it’s a declaration of what you want to become. They are a great tool that can help you change negative thoughts.
Positive Thoughts = Positive Emotions
Negative Thoughts = Negative Emotions
You get to choose how you want to feel today. It’s up to you! Use the power that is in you (D&C 58:28) to decide. Focus on those thoughts, and those thoughts will lead to the emotions you desire.
I myself have battled with anxiety, depression, and OCD. I will say it is not easy to take power over your thoughts for anybody—let alone someone battling a mental illness. But just because it isn’t easy, doesn’t mean it isn’t possible. Little by little, it gets easier and becomes more and more possible. If you have a mental illness, all is not lost!