I know the feeling.
You’re in a bad mood, and someone tells you that you woke up that morning and chose to be that way. All you have to do is choose to be happy and voila! You’re happy. Which is kind of like saying all you have to do is choose to be a ballerina-astronaut who lives in the White House, and just by thinking it, it will happen.
But I’ve learned in two years of therapy and studying Focusing that positive self-talk can’t change what your body knows. Deep down inside you there’s a “Felt Sense” that understands why you’re in a bad mood. It’s behind your feelings and thoughts. Quashing it or ignoring it won’t make it go away.
In fact, if you let your head override what’s deep in your body, your body may rebel with a migraine, back pain or an ulcer, for instance.
Instead of sticking smiley faces on what needs your attention, you need to
learn to “sit with it,” ask it what it needs and validate that it’s there. Don’t talk yourself out of it — but don’t wallow in it either — and you could, dare I say, get happy.