Recognizing the Mind's Three Distinctive Functions
Figure 4.2. Thinking is the part of the mind that figures out what is going on. Feelings tell us whether things are going well or poorly for us. The wanting part of the mind propels us forward or away from action.
Looked at this way, our mind is continually communicating three kinds of things to us: 1) what is going on in our life; 2) feelings (positive or negative) about those events; and 3) things to pursue, where to put our energy (in the light of 1 and 2).
What is more, there is an intimate, dynamic interrelation between thinking, feeling, and wanting (Figure 4.3). Each is continually influencing the other two. When, for example, we think we are being threatened, we feel fear, and we inevitably want to flee from or attack whatever we think is threatening us. When we think that attending a meeting will be a waste of time, we will want to avoid attending it and will feel bored if compelled to attend.
Figure 4.3. Thinking, feeling, and wanting are interwoven. Where there is one, the other two are present as well. These three functions continually interact and influence one another in a dynamic process.