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Have any of you ever gone to a party and found that you felt differently throughout the night?
I went somewhere the other night and I stayed for about 2 hours. Within that 2 hour period, I noticed that at certain points I felt happy and I was enjoying myself.
At other points I stated feeling insecure, the thoughts in my head where saying, “What am I even doing here, does anyone even want me here?”
At another point I felt bored, the thoughts in my head sounded like, “This is so boring; when can I leave?” And at other points I felt confident and happy to be there. The thoughts in my head where saying, “This is so fun, I am so happy to be seeing my friends.”
Let me ask you something: how is it possible for me to feel all those emotions at the same party?
If the party were causing my emotions, I would have only been able to feel one of those things. If there was a “truth” about the party, I would have felt only one of those emotions.
The fact that I was able to feel many different emotions regarding the same circumstance tells me that it can’t be the circumstance; it has to be something else. I am going to suggest that it is my thinking about the party that caused my emotions, not the party itself.
No one will ever feel only one emotion regarding any circumstance. Why? Because our thoughts change moment to moment, which means our experience will change moment to moment. When we know that, we are no longer stuck.
I can only feel my thinking; the only thing that holds a thought in place is my belief in that thought. The second I believe that thought to be true, it will look and feel real to me, even if it’s not.
When I am at that party and start feeling insecure, the only thing I have to know is I am only feeling that because I am thinking it. The second we remember it’s just a thought, and it may not actually be true, is the second we will let that thought go.
Our only job is to try and notice our thinking in the moment. If we don’t like the feeling, just wait, naturally the thought will flow out on its own.
I challenge all of you reading this to start noticing your thoughts. Notice how you feel depending on what thoughts are in your head. Give me some feedback.
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I was having a conversation with someone yesterday, and every time we started talking about a certain subject, I noticed we both couldn’t get through to the other.
She wasn’t understanding what I was saying, and I wasn’t understanding what she was saying. It was strange because neither of us was saying anything very complicated.
At a certain point it occurred to me that maybe the problem was we had different definitions of certain words.
For example She kept telling me “Your not listening to me” And I kept saying I was listening. At a certain point I asked her to define listening.
She said listening means “you hear what I am telling you to do and you do it, or if you where listening to me you would understand what I was saying and agree with me”.
I then said to her that is not my definition of listening, my definition is, “Hearing what you have to say and then making my own decision if that is right for me.
I realized she was right according to her definition of listening, I was not listening, but according to my definition I was.
I can’t tell you how many arguments I have avoided just because I realized if everything is subject to thought, that would mean even words are subject to thought.
Which means 2 people can be talking English, but based on their individual definition of words, can really be talking 2 different languages.
If you are ever in conversation with someone and notice you can’t seem to get your point across to the other, start asking the person his definition of certain words, you may find progress being made.
Before we discuss what the 3 principles are, I would like to talk about what principles are in general. A principle is an underlying fact of how nature works.
The principle of gravity says that what goes up must come down. Does anything change if I don’t believe in the principle of gravity? Gravity doesn’t care. I know this because no matter how many times I throw an apple in the air, it falls back to earth. A principle has nothing to do with what we believe. Whether or not we believe in the principle, or are even aware of it, it still exists.
How does it help us to know about principles?
Let’s go back to the example of gravity. Even though Newton had discovered this principle, we realized that human beings could not fly.
But we also knew that certain species of animals could fly. It wasn’t until we understood the principles of aerodynamics that we were able to work within those principles and make them work for us to counter the effect of gravity.
Then we were able to build airplanes and spaceships. Before we knew enough about gravity and which principles to use to counter its effects, we also tried to build airplanes, but we were never successful. We never knew what we did right or wrong when we could not keep an airplane in the air.
Principles gave us a starting framework from which to build, and the correct starting framework is the key to building anything.
If I try to build a building with the incorrect foundation, the building will collapse. Everything we create must start with the correct understanding of the principles at work.
One of the things that I recently discovered was that principles do not only operate outside of ourselves in nature. It should not surprise us to know that human beings were also created with psychological principles.
To the extent that we understand these principles, we can build our happiness and have a meaningful life.
What are these psychological principles?
There are three: MIND, THOUGHT and CONSCIOUSNESS.
Keep in mind that these principles are just metaphors. We are always looking to see behind the metaphor.
We are looking to understand what is before thought, what is before experience. Or in different words, what is the source of thought, or what is the source of our experience?
I had always thought it was my circumstances. What I see now is that that is not true.
Mind is the formless energy behind creation. Mind holds all of what exists in a potential state.
When we create something, for example a table or chair, we are taking formless energy and expressing it through a form.
Some people refer to Mind as G-d. After all, what is it that makes the heart beat and the blood flow? It is this energy. (Others understand the principle of Mind to be divine in essence, but not the whole of what G-d might be, G-d ultimately being beyond any description.)
The principle of Thought is the formless energy that takes form through thoughts.
Thought is a divine tool that has the potential to allow us to see life as we wish. Where does Thought come from? Thought (and Consciousness as well) comes from the first principle of Mind.
Thoughts can come through our higher self and be helpful or true. Or they can come through the ego or the body and be habitual, limiting or unhelpful thoughts.
Thoughts we have carried with us our whole lives, thoughts from our parents or our culture, can be misleading and constricting. Thoughts, freeing or limiting, helpful, or unhelpful, are always the seed of our experience in any circumstance.
Let me give an example.
One person grew up in a family where, if it was raining, they never went out unless it was an emergency. Another person grew up in a house where they could go out if it was raining.
These two different people grew up with very different thoughts about a rainy day. Which one is right?
Each one thinks she is right, but the truth is that neither person is right or wrong. Our thoughts about the rain (and as we will see, our attachment to these thoughts) are the only things that would cause us to go out in the rain or stay in.
The rain itself is neutral; it’s just doing what it was created to do. But one person thinks of it – and thus experiences it – as wet and cold and maybe dangerous. The other person doesn’t think of it like this; she just experiences it as rain, not something that she needs to stop her life for, and may in fact enjoy.
The important thing for us to understand is that both people can allow the way they think of rain – or the way they think of anything – to change, and thus change their experience.
Let’s use another example.
Your child comes home in a really bad mood and the first thing she does is say something nasty to you.
You could think, ‘No child of mine should ever come home and speak that way to me’, and feel really angry and end up yelling at her.
Or you could feel compassion for her and quietly ask her what’s bothering her.
Finally, you might feel simply curious about what might have happened in school today that has upset her.
The point is that if circumstances dictate how we feel in any given situation then we should not have been able to describe three different reactions to the same situation.
What determines these three different reactions is the thinking about the circumstance and, as we shall see, our attachment to that thinking.
In the first example, it is your thought that she has no right to speak that way that generates a feeling of anger.
In the second example, it was your thought and your attachment to the thought that something must be bothering her which generates compassion.
In the third situation you thought, ‘I wonder what happened in school’, and so you felt curious. All three emotions and reactions were different because the thinking was different in each case.
It is through the principle of Consciousness that what we think becomes experience.
But how does this happen? We cannot feel or experience or even perceive any circumstance unless we have a thought about it and unless we attach ourselves to that thought through our consciousness.
The way we attach ourselves to a thought is by believing the thought.
Consciousness begins to take form and express itself first through awareness. Often, we are not even aware that we have had a thought that is defining our experience through our consciousness.
The beginning of choosing our experience is the awareness that we have attached ourselves to the thought behind it.
Movies are good metaphors. When a person sees a movie they might laugh or cry or be bored. But nothing real is happening except different lights being projected onto a screen.
We have attached ourselves to certain thinking and therefore we cry at a sad movie and laugh at a funny one.
To use an extreme example, if a person is in a coma (G-d forbid), one of the ways a doctor can tell if the person is still alive is if they have brain waves.
This fact suggests that even a person in a coma has thoughts. However, if they are not conscious they can’t experience their thoughts because they cannot attach themselves to their thoughts without consciousness.
Think about a refrigerator: the refrigerator needs the plug, outlet and compressor in order to work.
If I take the plug away, it doesn’t work. If I have the plug but take the outlet away, it won’t work. And if I leave the outlet and take the compressor away, it also doesn’t work. All three components are equally important to having a working refrigerator.
The Principles are no different. Without Mind, there is nothing to give us life and energy at all.
If I take Thought away, then I am basically a zombie because I have no way to interpret my circumstances.
And if I take Consciousness away, then I am oblivious because I have no way to experience my thoughts.
These three principals are active all the time. Through them, each person individually experiences and interprets his or her world.
Remember, these principles are active whether we realize it or not. The advantage of realizing them is that life gets a whole lot easier to manage and much more meaningful.
We all have a place inside that is wise, calm, resilient and full of common sense. It is the place that knows that everything will be all right even in the worst circumstances.
It is the part of us that can see the bright side of things, give the benefit of the doubt and rise above even the worst situations and hardest events in our lives.
It is the part of us that some scientists or psychologists would call our higher self, the source of healthy psychological function.
I am going to call it our soul. This is the spiritual part of us. Ideas and thoughts that come from our soul have very different feelings associated with them than the ideas and thoughts that come from our lower selves or egos.
What is an insight?
It is a thought that often comes with such an intense feeling of truth that many times it can be life changing. I call it an insight, which simply means a thought from the calm, wise place within.
Let me give you an example. You know on an intellectual level that fire is hot. You know you shouldn’t touch it because you could get burned.
But until you know fire is hot from an experience or an insight, you may still touch the fire. The only way you would never touch a fire is if you have actually touched fire.
Once you have touched fire you would really know that fire is hot. Insight is getting something at this same basic and powerful level of truth.
It’s the difference between knowing intellectually and deeply understanding something. Insight is to see a truth so clearly that we cannot think anything else. To have insight is to connect with our source of life and in that moment, either we see something for the first time or understand something we thought we knew, but at a deeper level.
Some call it an ah ha moment, others describe it as a light bulb going off in there head.
However we describe the feeling we get when we get an insight, the fact is that it comes with a very identifiable feeling.It is that feeling we are always listening for.
When trying to solve a problem, that seems unsolvable, always listen for an insight. Going over the same old thoughts an ideas that have not helped in the past, is just not helpful. let all those old ideas go and listen for new ones, ones that come with that feeling of truth and clarity
I had the pleasure of teaching Innate Health to a beautiful young girl.
When she came to me, she told me she would like me to help her overcome or “cure” Her eating disorder, the girl was diagnosed with anorexia.
She told me she is eating less than 500 calories a day and exercising 2 to 3 hours a day. She had been in and out of therapy for about a year and a half, but nothing was helping.
I told her I would love to work with her, but I do things a little bit differently.
I told her we are not going to concentrate on your “eating disorder” because you don’t have an eating disorder. What you have is very simply, a thought problem, when you understand how your thinking works you will solve the thought problem, and you will start eating again.
I have been working with this girl for only 11 weeks and she no longer has a thought problem surrounding food. She is eating 1200 calories a day and she has lessened her exercise schedule to a healthy 1 hour a day.
On top of that, I watched as her confidence soured, she has started her own business, and she basically smiles all the time now. By just learning about the 3 principles her life has gotten better in every area.
Wow! How did that happen in so little time and without us talking about Anorexia?
The answer is any problem we have is a direct result of, believing our emotions come from anywhere except our own thinking in the moment.
When we attribute emotional pain to something outside of our selves, for example, I would feel better if, I were thinner, smarter, wealthier…
Then what happens is we try and fix those things, if we can’t fix those things then we may turn to self medication to help ease the pain.
Self medication can be anything from drugs and alcohol, to eating, not eating or shopping. Self medication comes in all forms.
The second we realize the pain we are having is coming from a thought in the moment, and that thought will pass on its own.
The more I won’t need to get rid of the emotion by outside sources, because I know that naturally without any help from me the thought and therefore the pain will pass on its own.
I was asked to write an article on “the power of your thoughts”, as I sat down to write it, I felt stumped.
I first thought that I was having some kind of writer’s block, so I took a break for a few minutes, to try and clear my head. As I sat back down at my computer I realized the problem.
The problem is THIS , thoughts have no power. In case you didn’t get that, I am going to write it again in capital letters THOUGHTS HAVE NO POWER.
I am going to clarify that statement, thoughts have no power unless you believe in them, once you believe your thoughts they will look and feel real to you, even if they are completely false, and untrue.
Let’s talk about thought. What is thought? The principle of thought gives a person an ability to interpret a circumstance.
Let me give you an example,
your boss comes in and says something really nasty to you, you could have a few different reactions to this.
You may think how dare he speak to me that way, what’s his problem… and you would feel really angry,
or you could think, I am so stupid I must have done something wrong if he is talking to me this way, and you would feel insecure,
or you could think, he really must be having a hard day if he is acting like this, and feel compassion for him.
Same circumstance 3 different emotions and reactions. Which reaction is true, or the right one.
What I am suggesting is none are true and right, or all are. It depends on what thought you believe in, in the moment.
Let’s take this further,
the same person could have all those emotions regarding that same circumstance in a span of 20 seconds. How is that possible?
If there is truth to my reaction than only one of them should look appropriate to me, but that’s not what happens.
We have all had times when someone is mean to us and we are confused about what our reaction should be. We feel 100 different things in the course of a few minutes. I am going to ask the same question, what is causing the feelings the circumstance (boss yelling at me) or something else?
I am suggesting that it is something else, that something being our gift of thought.
How do we know we are thinking something? It will come with a feeling.
We can only feel our thinking not anything else.
You may say to me, but my boss really did yell at me,
I am not just thinking that, it actually happened. That is correct, your boss did yell at you. But all that your are feeling is your own thoughts about that.
And as I said before, thoughts are fluid they come in, and they go out, I will think many different thoughts in the span o f a minute, and I will feel every one of them.
Think of anger.
If you are angry at someone, you level of anger doesn’t stay steady you go from burning mad to angry to semi mad to back to very angry.
Circumstance didn’t change yet you are experiencing different levels of anger. This happens because your thoughts are shifting automatically, depending on which thought is in your head that’s the intensity of anger you will feel.
Thoughts are illusory by nature, most come and go, unless we give them staying power by believing in them. Happiness, sadness, or any emotion you feel can’t happen on its own, try being happy without a happy thought or depressed without a depressed thought, you couldn’t do it.
Did you ever have a time when you where feeling really overwhelmed, right in the middle of your feelings of overwhelm, your husband walks in with flowers for you, and immediately smile and feel appreciative and love for your husband. My question is what happened to the overwhelm? Where did it go?
What I am suggesting is when you took your focus off your thoughts of overwhelm you stopped feeling overwhelmed. When you focused on your happy thoughts, you felt happy.
The “reasons” you felt overwhelmed are still there yet you where able to not feel overwhelmed for a while. You will start feeling overwhelmed again, as soon as you revisit your overwhelmed thoughts.
When I say thoughts have no power, I mean this,
to the extent that we understand that we are only feeling our thinking in the moment, is the extent that we don’t need other people to change or our circumstances to change.
My ability to be happy, sad or any emotion comes from within me, not from circumstances outside of me.
I am not saying that things don’t have to be solved.
What I am saying is that once we start to understand the role thought plays in our life, we will have a better ability to navigate which thoughts are true, and or helpful and which thoughts are unhelpful, and or destructive.
All thought once we believe it will look true to us, even if they are not, so how can I tell the difference? I am going to suggest that our emotions are the clue we need to tell us where our thinking is.
Anger, jealousy, resentment, depression… Those emotions are there to tell us, if we are feeling any of those things the thoughts and ideas on how to handle that situation are not going to be helpful.
Let me ask you, can anyone say they have ever solved a problem when their anger was talking? I know I haven’t.
On the other hand , if we are feeling love, curiosity, compassion.. those emotions would be there to tell us, our thoughts and ideas are more helpful and productive.
Understanding that our thoughts are illusory gives us the power to not take all our thinking seriously, the less we take our thoughts seriously the less “power” they have over us.
If I don’t believe a destructive thought I will not act from it.
If I feel angry and the thoughts in my head are saying yell at your husband.
If I believe that thought I will probably yell at him.
But if I realize that it’s just a thought, and I don’t have to listen to it, I may not yell at my husband, I may wait for a thought and idea that comes with a better feeling, and in that state of mind speak with my husband.
I can guarantee you waiting to solve a problem from a better feeling state is more conducive to actually solving the problem
The following was written by a girl who recovered from Anorexia while working with me:
It started with a simple diet, watching what I was eating. I took out some carbohydrates, and started counting my calories.
I started because I wasn’t feeling so great inside, I noticed I had gained little weight.
As time went on because I was very depressed I started to realize I was still feeling very down, and I didn’t know why.
I tried a lot of therapy, but nothing really worked.
As I was feeling worse, I started to loose more of my appetite and a lot more of my feelings.
More time went on, I would restrict more food, not because I really felt it was going to help, but because I thought if I was thinner, I would have control over this one part of my life, and I would be happier.
Although my relationships were suffering with my family and my friends, I would always try and avoid eating which really hurt bad inside and out.
But I started noticing I couldn’t recognize myself or my personality. I felt I was watching myself from the outside,which felt so weird.
It got to point where me and mom, who where always best friends, had become complete strangers,which was so ruff because I loved her so much, I just had nothing in me to show it.
As time went on more food went out, this went on for while.
There was a slight points were I had couple of binges because I hadn’t eaten for so long. That would go on for a Couple hours, which sucked and felt terrible.
Then I was starting to get little better, I had coughed up the truth about having an eating disorder.
I thought I was getting better which wasn’t really true because I still felt really bad.
That’s when the exercise came into picture.
I thought to myself it helped me feel better before why not now.
But that was very false, because it went from one hour a day, every other day, to two hours, after awhile I slowly approached three hours a day, every day, and still I felt like crap.
I also looked horrible, I was pale, loosing hair, tired, grumpy, not getting enough back to my engine (aka my body) I was in full blown starvation mood.
After couple months of trying to trick everyone around me. I had felt more tired and looked worse and worse.
I felt worse on the outside and on the inside. I felt horrible all the time, I felt I had nothing to me.
I was seeing a counselor for around 6 months, but she wasn’t really helping me.
I now know the reason why it wasn’t helping, was because we focused on some on the actual issue instead of what was causing the issue, of my non eating in the first place.
My mom met, Melissa Cohen, and told her what was going on with me. Melissa said, she can help me.
My mom asked me if I would agree to see her, and be open to learning what she had to teach.
She told me she is not a therapist, or a counselor, she simply teaches this understanding called Innate Health. This understanding has helped many people overcome eating disorders. I agreed to go.
That’s when I first started learning Innate Health, with Melissa. The problem comes from the part of the body that you can also seek solution from which is your brain, or your thinking.
So yes maybe I thought eating was going to make me fat, or maybe I was just holding onto that thought, because it was the only thing I had control over in that time period.
It wasn’t real control it was me “thinking” I had control ,but like anything else our minds can be lovely but lethal.
I remember the first day I started learning with Melissa. I wasn’t so open to suggestions or seeing what I was doing was very unhealthy.
I knew I felt very alone and one one could understand me.
I “thought” that only someone that went through this, would ever be able to understand it fully, because it’s so beyond painful.
My stomach, my hands, even my feet, hurt so much, and then they go numb.
There’s no one to talk to, its just you and that scale. You “think” the number is so painful which it really isn’t.
The only time it has control over you, is when you let your unhealthy, unhappy thinking takes over.
I had to start learning to to trust my “helpful thinking”.
Weather I could see it or not I was causing real problems in my body all because I wanted to be thin.
I thought it was going to make me happy. But being thin doesn’t change anything, expect for the way you look,it doesn’t change the way you feel.
It becomes endless everyday your not happy, and every morning your running to check your weight.
At some point I had an insight, and I saw, from a place of truth and wisdom, (that can only come from within me) That it might be possible, to eat and maintain my weight.
I said to myself “why don’t I try to eat healthy see what happens”.
So I tried it, and to my surprise I was just fine.
I didn’t gain much weight, but I was eating and feeling stronger, healthier, and happier than ever.
After proving myself wrong, and seeing that I can be happy and healthy and be OK, I then had another insight, which said “what’s the point in feeling sick everyday”.
They say seeing and believing can change you,so can letting go of really unhelpful,destructive thinking, and letting in, helpful, productive thinking.
It’s not positive thinking, its just understanding, you are thinking in the first place.
Your brain is very powerful it can play devils advicit with you.
I can’t say that I don’t still have thoughts about food and gaining weight because it will probably always be a in a little part of my brain.
You can choose to focus on the better thoughts that are going to help you instead of hurting you.
Because once you help yourself g-d and everyone else around you helps.
I think it helps because you can go back to doing everything you love to do and and more.
I got all my confidence back. I feel like I am not hiding and lying to anyone around me anymore.
I began to feel like myself not this stranger.
I am definitely not saying it’s going to be easy, it’s one of toughest things ever. I battled with my entire family especially with my mom.
I lied about eating all the time when I was struggling for that year and a half.
Almost every day I struggle with some bad thoughts, but it’s a fight in your brain to pick the healthy thoughts verse the unhelpful thoughts.
As I began to listen to my better thoughts my life started to get better and fall into place. I feel like I was lost for so long. Learning Innate Health, helped me find myself again.
Don’t think your not going to struggle with those same thoughts, they will just become a lot less powerful, because you now have the ability to ignore those, and focus on better ones.
Your mind quiets downs so you don’t have to fight as much.
You begin to live again without any worries of hiding,or lying. You just focus on having fun and finding your way back, on your own track.
G-d helps all who help themselves,even if you think he is not there, he is always watching, giving us strength to take care of ourselves and those around us.
I am not going to say it’s easy because it’s not but it’s definitely worth it. I got my life, my family, my friends, and most importantly my Health back.