Once you learn the technique of POWER Emotions, part of the Telos Lifestyle Revolution training, you will be able to change any feeling/emotion/state in as little as a few minutes, or even a few seconds once you have some practice.
A study recently published in the Proceedings of National Academy of Sciences by Alan S. Cowen and Dacher Keltner, PhD from the University of California, Berkeley, identified 27 distinct categories of emotions (listed below).
For the study, Cowen and Keltner collected 2,185 short videos that aimed to elicit particular emotions such as five to ten second clips of a pig falling out of a moving truck, a cat giving a dog a massage, an attacking lion, or a man with a spider in his mouth.
Using participants from Amazon Mechanical Turk they collates a total of 324,066 individual judgements made up of 27,660 multiple-choice categorical judgements, 19,710 free-response judgements, and 276,696 nine-point dimensional judgements.
The ability to use big data to analyse abstract concepts like emotions brings us a step closer to understanding how we think and feel. However, even the leading researchers in this field, who can’t even agree on the definition of what emotions are, where they come from and how to manage them, admit that their knowledge on the subject is limited to say the least.
Emotions have proven to be very evasive and one person’s account of sadness can not only be different to another person’s, but also their own.
For example, sadness for the loss of a loved family pet can be very different from the sadness that the same person feels when saying goodbye to a loved one who is going away to live in another country.
(see Wikipedia for more information on Core Affect and Multi-dimensional analysis)
Mindfulness and meditation have their place and I recommend trying them and practising them for a long period of time to see how they suit you, or not.
However, to try to manage your emotions with these tools is like trying to chop potatoes with a wooden spoon. They just won’t cut it.
They can take your mind off a negative feeling for a while whilst doing it, but for most people, as soon as you go back to your normal frame of mind those emotions will jump straight back into your mind along with all those horrible feelings.
The submissive attitude from these disciplines towards the effect of emotions can be summed up in this famous quote:
Feelings come and go like clouds in a windy sky. Conscious breathing is my anchor.
~ Thich Nhat Hanh
And the generally taught practice for working with emotions is the following:
Becoming aware of your emotions and how you feel is a great start, and if you are already in a good place and maybe are just stressed from something that is already within your control that’s easy to do, however, for many people, they need something a little bit more effective and longer lasting.
Here is a simple to do and research proven exercise for helping with smoothing out negative emotions.
James Pennebaker has done 40 years of research into the links between writing and emotional processing. His experiments revealed that people who write about emotionally charged episodes experience a marked increase in their physical and mental well-being.
In a study of recently laid-off workers, he found that those who delved into their feelings of humiliation, anger, anxiety, and relationship difficulties were three times more likely to have been reemployed than those in control groups.
You can practice journaling yourself using the exercise below.
I would recommend doing it daily and I’ve gone into more detail on James Pennebaker’s work and others who study this field of psychology in this article –The Many Health Benefits of Daily Journaling
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