Welcome to Insights and Implications!
As we embark on the beginning of the holiday season, we thought you would appreciate a more personal story this month. Read below for an amusing tale of the interplay of insight principles, dogs, and packing peanuts.
If this is your first time receiving our newsletter, welcome! Sent just once per month, each newsletter contains a short story that illustrates our use of insight principles in real life. We hope this series becomes an easy and accessible way for you to reconnect with your learning, reflect, and deepen your understanding of insight principles.
We hope you are enjoying life, and please accept our best wishes for a wonderful holiday week!
All the best,
All of us at Insight Principles
Sometimes You Just Want To Get MAD!
Puppies! One day I heard my husband yelling from the garage. Our 6-month-old puppy had gotten into a huge garbage bag filled with Styrofoam peanuts. He’d ripped into the bag and peanuts were EVERYWHERE!
My husband was furious. (Oh, and did I mention we were on our way to a movie and we were already late?) He looked at me and said, “Don’t tell me this is just my thinking!”
I have learned to keep quiet when my husband is upset, much less give a mini-tutorial on psychological functioning. So I said nothing. I got the dog, put him in his crate, and helped pick up the peanuts- which, by the way, were now blowing all over the driveway.
That evening when all was calm and my husband and I were petting our now sleepy and quiet puppy, I asked why he’d implored me not to say anything about his thinking. He gave the most interesting reply. “Sometimes I just want to get mad. I don’t want hear about how I could feel differently.”
As I listened, I realized that my husband had the idea that insight principles were prescribing a way to be – like principles to live by. He was hearing that he should he happy all the time. I know he’s not the only one who hears it this way.
Advice giving, sharing strategies, fixing problems, and suggesting behavioral changes are common in human interaction. Insight principles carry a different message. These principles are simply describing the human psychological operating system – not prescribing how to use it.
Feeling angry is an example of the human operating system at work, as is feeling happy, sad, or amused. Each feeling requires thought, and all thought gets crafted inside our heads. While feelings appear to be a response to external events, they are actually a response to inner thoughts.
This is the principle of thought just like an apple falling from a tree obeys the principle of gravity. Understanding gravity will not prevent the apple from falling from the tree, just as understanding the principle of thought will not prevent us from getting angry.
We all get angry. However, knowing the internal source of the feeling can save us mental work. We can simply allow ourselves to have the feeling, knowing that it will exist until another thought occurs and brings with it a different feeling state.
Understanding insight principles keeps us from holding onto mental clutter. It allows thoughts to flow freely, taking us on a rich and feeling-filled journey, without getting stuck at any of the stops.
©Insight Principles, Inc.