Naming Your Emotions

In fact, each of us is an expert in emotions. We experience emotions—-sorrow, joy, anger or gratefulness day in and day out. They are as common and natural as breathing. But such emotions are not everlasting and sometimes can be transient.

In psychology, emotion is a conscious experience, and is often associated with mood, temperament, personality, disposition and motivation. Evolution has given us emotions to help us cope with dangerous situations. Emotions evolve to drive people to take actions in the face of danger. We retain the emotional system of our cave-man ancestors, who regularly faced life-and-death situations. In modern life, these emotions often overwhelm thought.

Emotions can be categorized into 6 types from different perspectives:

  • Original basic emotions: such as happiness, anger, fear and sorrow.
  • Emotions related to sensory irritation: such as pain, hate and light-heartedness.
  • Emotions related to self-evaluation: such as sense of success or frustration, pride, shame, guilt and remorse. Such emotions depend on an individual’s cognition of the correlation of his own behavior and various standards.
  • Emotions related to other people: such as love and hatred. Such emotions usually become long-lasting mood tendency and attitude.
  • Emotions related to appreciation: such as wonder, awe, aesthetic feeling and sense of humor.
  • Emotions based on state of being: such as mental state, passion and stress state.

In general, emotions can be positive or negative. When you think an idea is interesting or creative, you and your partner are connected soul to soul, you are moved by the pure beauty in life, or you feel energized by a novel idea or hobby, you will find yourself in joy, gratefulness, peace of mind, or motivation. When things don’t go as you expected, you are ignored by your boss or have difference of opinion with your partner, you might feel disappointed, sad or upset. Such feelings in daily life circumstances are emotions. All you need to do is identifying your emotions by saying to yourself: “I’m happy”, “I feel depressed”, “I’m disappointed”, “I’m lonely”, “I feel anxious”… It’s important to pay attention to your emotions and allow yourself to have various emotions without judging whether the emotions are good or bad. In this way, you give yourself space and time for the emotions to shift naturally. Emotions constitute important parts of our inner world, which is as rich as the outer world. We can care about our inner world in the same as way as we care about the outer world.

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