Ever wondered what truly makes up your emotions?
You’ve probably used words like ‘happy’ or ‘sad’ most of your life, but have you ever tried to break down what these feelings truly mean? Understanding our emotions can be tricky, but did you know that every emotion you experience is composed of four fundamental building blocks? Let’s delve into what these elements are.
First, we have the stimulus. This is the trigger that sparks the emotion. It could be anything – a smell, a person, a memory, or even an activity you’re engaging in. Even simple needs or senses, like hunger or the sound of a familiar voice, can trigger emotions in babies.
Next is your awareness. The stimulus itself won’t stir up an emotion unless your mind registers it. This moment of consciousness could be either a subconscious or conscious recognition. Your attention is caught, and suddenly, this stimulus holds a certain significance that other things around you don’t.
Then comes the judgment. How do you feel about this stimulus? Your subconscious already knows your preferences and is silently guiding you toward a positive or negative emotional response.
Finally, there’s the reaction. This is your physical response to the stimulus. For instance, a spider crawling on your hand might make your eyes widen and a chill run down your spine before you even consciously notice the spider. This is closely followed by a physical reaction, like pulling your hand away, or even a verbal response, like a scream, if you’re afraid of spiders.
So, why should you care about this?
Well, if you’re looking to change how you feel about certain things, these four building blocks are a great place to start. The stimulus and your awareness may not always be within your control, but your judgment and reaction can be shaped.
Take the spider example. If you want to overcome your fear of spiders, you can start by changing your judgment and reaction. Tell yourself spiders aren’t frightening and practice not reacting when you see one. With time, you might find that instead of feeling fear, you feel indifference or even curiosity when you encounter a spider.
Mastering your emotions may take some time, but it’s an incredibly rewarding journey. Remember, consistency is key in this process, and before you know it, these changes will become second nature.
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