Thoughts cause emotions.
Thoughts cause actions.
Emotions cause thoughts.
Emotions cause actions.
Actions cause thoughts.
Actions cause emotions.
It’s a dance. Some think that the thoughts take the lead, others emotions, and others actions. I think they are all correct.
It’s not a straight line where A –> B –> C. It’s more of triangle, with each point connecting to the other.
Change any one of them, and the other two will follow. They may come along kicking and screaming, but they’ll come along eventually.
Emotions are the hardest to work on directly. Drugs the easiest way that I know of. Most of the ones I’ve tried have brought my life to some pretty horrifying places. A few (mainly for my Bipolar disorder) have helped, but only to stabilize. There is no joy to be found in Lamictal.
Thoughts can sometimes be changed directly, but forcing new ones seldom lasts, and can actually be harmful.
(With regard to thoughts and feelings, I’ve found that unconditional acceptance of my current state is the best starting point for change.)
Actions are the easiest to brute force. The tiniest action (putting one foot on the floor after laying in a heap of apathy, straightening our back after slouching) can have a major impact on our thoughts and emotions. It’s the lever that can move your world. But action untempered by thought and emotion is blind and can be the lever that destroys your world.
If you want to dance a different dance, first recognize who is doing the leading, and maybe let one of the others tap in.