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Episode 132: There Is Nothing Either Good Or Bad

As Old Bill Shakespeare once said "There is nothing either good or bad, but thinking makes it so"
It’s true, it’s only our interpretation of what happens that makes something either good or bad, our thought processes dictate our reality.

Even our personality, our belief about self, is directly driven by our thought processes. We create our personality and our belief system by conforming to our own internal expectations, and by repeating behaviours until the feel automatic.
But, your personality wasn’t given to you at birth. It was developed over time as you interacted with the world and maybe picked up on other peoples beliefs. Their beliefs about themselves, the world, maybe someone else’s beliefs about you.

And so, the way we interact with the world isn’t always in the same way that it interacts with us. We often use our pre-existing view of what is happening to interpret things differently.

I think one of the most important things to recognise is that we shouldn’t give meaning to events, as we can easily use our pre-existing belief to create the wrong meaning and then see things with the wrong perspective and be upset over an event for no reason.

For example, if your boss shouts at you it doesn’t mean that you’re useless. There could be many reasons why your boss is angry, it might mean that they’re going through a tricky divorce and that’s nothing to do with you.

Often I get home from work to find that my son has taken off his school jumper and dumped it in the corner of the room.
He regularly forgets about it and may even go to bed with the jumper still left, crumpled and ignored in the corner of the room.

What does this mean?

Does it mean “I like taking advantage of my Dad, he can tidy up after me, ‘cos he’s a jerk”?
No, it means he got hot, took his jumper off and forgot about it.

If you put meaning to an event, then the event can lead to an emotion.
But, the event itself isn’t what created the emotion. It was our own specific meaning behind it that did that. So if we can separate the meaning from the emotion then you change the way it makes you feel.

If ever you find yourself upset over something, look at the event that caused it, a thought process or maybe something external.
Whatever happened prior to the feeling was an event, and the meaning behind the event caused the feeling.

Once you realise that the meaning is in your mind, not in the external world, the feeling can disappear.

That doesn’t mean trying to suppress emotion though!

There’s a difference between suppressing an emotion and dissolving the meaning that causes the emotion.
Ignoring your emotions and trying to bury them does not help, it just causes more and more anxiety instead.

But looking at alternative meanings behind the event that caused the emotion in the first place will make you a much happier person.

Try it, practise looking for different meanings behind an event and see if you can dissolve some negativity from your life.

Episode List

Episode 138: Keeping Up With The Joneses
Episode 137: The Likeable You
Episode 136: Why It's OK To Be A Loser
Episode 135: The Psychology Of Extremism
Episode 134: Are You A Lobster?
Episode 133: Critical Thinking
Episode 132: There Is Nothing Either Good Or Bad
Episode 131: The For And Against Of Imagination
Episode 130: Loneliness & Social Networks
Episode 129: Letting Go Of The Past
Episode 128: What Is Love?
Episode 127: Procrastination
Ep. 126: Who Were You Before The World Changed You?
Episode 125: Stop Saying "Sorry"
Episode 124: Emotional Contagion
Episode 123: Patience
Episode 122: Building On Your Foundations
Episode 121: Dealing With The Critics
Episode 120: Being Assertive. Just Say No!
Episode 119: Inactivity
Episode 118: Social Functioning & Evolution
Episode 117: Unleash Your Inner Superhero
Episode 116: Goals, Values and Priorities
Episode 115: 10 Tips To A Happier Life
Episode 114: Lies And Confabulation
Episode 113: Confirmation Bias
Episode 112: Are You An Imposter?
Episode 111: What Doesn't Kill You Makes You Stronger
Episode 110: Are New Years Resolutions a good idea?
Episode 109: The African Violet Queen Of Milwaukee
Episode 108: Reframing
Episode 107: Spiders And Behaviourism
Episode 106: Practise Makes Perfect
Episode 105: Fear Of Flying
Episode 100 - 104: Happiness
Episode 99: Body Image And The Media
Episode 98: Evolution and Adaptation
Episode 97: Reflections And Regrets.
Episode 96: Dealing With Fear
Episode 95: Confidence
Episode 94: Enthusiasm
Episode 93: Tips To Relieve Christmas Stress
Episode 92: Dealing With Change
Episode 87 - 91: Self Esteem
Episode 86: Correlation Does Not Imply Causation
Episode 85: The Importance Of Being Lazy
Episode 84: Elephant Chains
Episode 83: Eating Bananas And Setting Goals
Episode 82: Ignoring The Media And Listening To Music
Episode 81: Awakening The Instincts
Episode 80: The Fine Line Between Love And Hate
Episode 79: The Best Medicine
Episode 78: A New Start
Episode 77: Time Distortion
Episode 76: Making Decisions
Episode 75: What's In A Name?
Episode 74: Pushing Ourselves Further
Episode 73: Conformity
Episode 72: Purpose
Episode 71: Perspective
Episode 70: Expectation
Episode 69: The Mind / Body Link
Episode 68: Overcoming Shyness
Episode 67: Mood Boosting
Episode 66: Sabotaging your goals
Episode 65: Self Talk
Episode 64: Money Makes The World Go Round
Episode 63: First Impressions Count
Episode 62: False Belief
Episode 61: Absolutes
Episode 60: The Psychology of feeling calm
Episode 59: Belief
Episode 58: Anchoring Emotions
Episode 57: Negativity and Perspective
Episode 56: Health And Happiness
Episode 55: Imagination vs Reality
Episode 54: Change