Feeding happiness

There are countless different theories on emotions and how many baseline emotions humans have. One of the most prominent is Robert Plutchik's wheel of emotions that identifies eight basic emotions; joy, sadness, trust, disgust, fear, anger, surprise, and anticipation. More recent studies from Glasgow have narrowed this down further to only four irreducible emotions: happiness, sadness, anger, and fear.

Where wired to look out for trouble. That's how we've survived this far. Out of the four irreducible emotions three would be classified as "negative"; sadness, anger and fear. Whereas happiness is the light energy one. Sadness, anger and fear will all visit us from time to time during the course of our lifetime, we don't need to feed them. We need to feed happiness though, some say we even have to work for it.

It's not a race or a competition, still, we need to make conscious choices of where we want to wander when we're at baseline in our lives, when things just move along. How do you feed your happiness? Do you know what actions, people and circumstances help you get there more often? We don't need to run from the uncomfortable emotions, but we certainly don't need to chase them either, they always find us. 

I realize more and more that what I actually work with is mental training. In myself and in my clients. We program the brain to track and look for happiness, in the small things in life. Maybe I can help you too? 

With all my love,


Every feeling fully felt is bliss

Joseph Campbell said that. Oh, I so agree. Suffering comes when we resist. Which we do. We're human. 

What if we could just be with our anger, without judgement, resistance or regret. What if we could just feel our sadness. Deep. Raw. True. Shame can be truly transforming if we look at it and dare to share. 

I woke up the other day with anger bubbling from within. I meditated on it. I felt it through my body with yoga. I wrote it out. And eventually, I just let it be. No resistance. It's okay to be angry. And not fully understand why. I forgave myself in every moment of anger. Over and over again. And after a while, it transformed. The day ended up being full of real conversation, creativity and beautiful coincidences. 

I promised myself years ago, to never smother a belly laugh. For most, it's easier to fully feel, so called, positive emotions, but still, I used to suppress my laughter, when I didn't feel it was "appropriate". Today, I cry in public. Both from belly laughing and from sadness. 

With all my love,

Your negative emotions don't define who you are

In the pressure of constantly feeling good, doing good and living a happy life we sometimes try to look away from our negative emotions. As if they would define us if they show up too often. "I'm a sad person", "I'm the angry one" or "I'm guilty". There are no negative emotions. There are just emotions, and all of them need to be fully felt. 

Emotions are sign posts as to what we need to look at. Hey, there's some sadness here - go hang out with it for a bit and see what you need to learn. Or, get still and investigate the bubbling anger that you've been carrying around. The guilt might be showing you where you need to change or where you need to let go. 

Whatever, so called, negative emotion you are experiencing repeatedly, ask it some questions: Where did you come from? What do you want me to know? Is there anything I need to change in my life or relationships for you to calm down? What do I need to learn right now? 

Don't be defined by your emotions, just be curious as to what they are trying to tell you and show up for whatever is up.

With all my love,