Between thinking and feeling


“If you were to become aware of only one mental dynamic, the most important one to know about would be the relationship between your thinking and the way you feel. It’s important to realize that you are constantly thinking. Don’t be fooled into believing that you are already aware of this fact. Think, for a moment, about your breathing.

Until this moment, when you are reading this sentence, you had currently lost sight of the fact that you were doing it. The truth is, unless you are out of breath, you simply forget that it’s occurring. Thinking works in the same way. Because you’re always doing it, it’s easy to forget that it’s happening, and it becomes invisible to you.

Unlike breathing, however, forgetting that you are thinking can cause some serious problems in your life – unhappiness, anger, inner conflicts, stress. The reason this is true is that your thinking will always come back to you as a feeling; there is a point-to-point relationship.


Try getting angry without first having angry thoughts. Try feeling stressed out without first having stressful thoughts. Sad without sad thoughts. Jealous without thoughts of jealousy. You can’t do it. It’s impossible. In order to experience a feeling, you must first have a thought that produces that feeling.

In the absence of that thinking, the unhappiness, or stress, or jealousy, can’t exist. There is nothing to hold your negative feelings in place other than your own thinking.”

Richard Carlson
Don’t Sweat The Small Stuff