Shamanic teachings tell us that thoughts and feelings are energy. Emotions are energy in motions (E-motion). They are meant to be fluid and constantly moving, not dammed up and stagnant. Thoughts are energy in creation. Everything we think, say and do creates something within us and around us. Also, on the other side of the coin, those things we don't think, say or do create a reality all their own as well. The absence is just as important as the presence when it comes to thoughts.
As energy, thoughts, words and actions have a ripple effect for the next 7 generations. We can see that pretty clearly when we look even at just 3 or 4 generations. Think about toxic behavior, for example. An alcoholic grandparent can have a ripple effect of negativity down through the generations to their great grandchildren. We don't need to study rocket science to see that very clearly.
But it is the more subtle things that go through our minds in the forms of thought energies that trip us up even worse sometimes. A simple thought like "I couldn't possibly do that." is something that disables us for years. And it is something that we unconsciously pass down to our children and they pass down to their children. We need to rework our own thoughts so that the energy they produce can be helpful instead of harmful.
I remember doing a healing body work exercise and hearing my father's voice very clearly say,"You'll never stand on your own two feet." To my knowledge, he never said this to me. But I do know that he had that belief about himself. And I do know that he projected that belief onto others around me. I just didn't realize that I had integrated it into my own personal belief system. Days after this happened, I was in a rock store and the owner showed me a photo of his daughters, all in their late teens and early twenties. Then he said that he had always raised them with a "Yes, you can" statement so that they would grow up to be confident and capable women. I have applied this philosophy to my own daughters, born years after this encounter. I am quite amazed at how easy the negative belief of my father has been erased within two generations. I don't think this would have been possible if I were still unconscious of the fact that the belief was within me.
We need to allow ourselves to become conscious. How do we do this? We pay attention to the voices inside our minds. The tapes that keep running over and over about how wrong, or stupid, or unworthy or weak we are can be erased and replaced with tapes of self-confidence, strength, intelligence and capability. We just need to take a little bit of time and pay attention to ourselves. Also we need to look at what comes out of our mouths. When we really look at some things we say that seem to make sense at the time we can find that they are actually negative programs that can be disabling. I have found a few of those recently in my own words during my life changes. I am so happy that I have friends and family to point them out to me. Shaman...heal thyself! We are all human and we all have stuff. It is how we work with that stuff that counts.