Episode 229 S6-29
The Endless Night Ch 29
Emotions compose our reality, and having the ability to control those emotions gives you the power to reduce your stress levels through any type of disaster. There are stages to feeling an emotion as described by James Gross, Stanford University Professor, in 2001. The first thing that happens is a situation grabs our attention. Because we react to it, we start to analyze it and assign meaning to that event. Emotions occur because of this assessment of the incident.
If the response is appropriate and doesn’t cause physical hard to the person feeling the emotion or the people nearby, it does not require repairing. However, sometimes, you may react in a way that embarrasses yourself or puts others in harm emotionally or physically. Reacting negatively and spreading those emotions around can be bad for your relationships, your job, and even your health. This inability of society at large to control their emotional selves may be the reason so many psychological problems exist.
There are methods you can use to control your angry and stressed out feelings. Some of these require you to set yourself up for success. Attempting to select the situation you place yourself into can help. For example, if you are late and in a hurry, you are more likely to become upset by further delays. Changing the situation by aiming for more realistic goals can be helpful. Instead of looking at the person in the gym, you admire and wanting to instantly be there, set challenges you can reach, and take baby steps to get to the end goal. Altering your focus in this way will help you to realize that you are getting better, give yourself a moment to feel good about your achievements. Shifting your thought process helps a lot. What you believe dictates how you will react.
Try to understand that other people have their own missions, and you don’t need to bear the weight of those actions. Seeing things another way changes your emotional reaction to them. Understand that there are some crummy circumstances you are going to face in life. Having more positive feelings about those situations will help you to handle them with control of yourself. Realize that people are not judging you as harshly as you might imagine. They are worried about how you are judging them, what they need to make for dinner and whatever else is happening in their lives. Be you; it’s okay. If everything else fails you have to change your response. You can do it. Only you control your emotions and you have the power to change them. Close your eyes for a moment, take a deep breath, and don’t do something you may regret.
Making sure you are engaging in physical activity will help you have an increased level of emotional control. Severe psychological problems: bipolar disease, major depressive disorders, and schizophrenia can result from inactivity. Other components result from inactivity that leads to these mental problems. Elevated “bad” cholesterol levels, high levels of triglycerides (fatty acids), high blood pressure just short of hypertension, high glucose levels just short of diabetes, and a waist circumference just short of obesity are precursors to the development of psychological problems. Often the antipsychotic meds, mood stabilizers and antidepressants can all cause additional weight gain assisting the persistence of the problem.
The lack of physical exercise creates a vicious cycle. It is unknown whether depression decreased motivation, which reduces exercise or if the lack of exercise decreased motivation, which causes depression, but either way the symptoms are directly linked together. Individuals with unhealthy diets, lack of financing for help learning exercises, menopausal women unhappy with their new shape and individuals embarrassed about their physical fitness level are at increased risk for furthering the problem.
Negative emotions of individuals can affect society as a whole. News exposure and mental health often go hand in hand. Violent, depressing and emotionally charged stories usually comprise the most-watched material. Humans have a natural negative bias and are more attracted to watching things that are dangerous or threatening. The need to avoid situations hazardous to an individual created this bias through evolution of the human species. Nowadays, advertising companies want to attract people and utilize this bias to make more money. Studies have shown that some individuals become more sensitive while others become numb to the images. People who show a pre-established pattern of this extreme behavior are more likely to become even more emotionally charged or numbed by these images.
Your emotions can feed to others, and those feed to others and soon there is an overwhelming feeling in general society. Your mood will change to what you are viewing, being told by others on social media, or when you meet them in the streets. The stronger your connection to an individual, the more likely you are to display the emotion that you may have picked up from someone else. You need to ask yourself, is this feeling mine? Did your mood suddenly change? It is not your responsibility to carry the emotions of others. If that person is profoundly depressed, your mind may make up reasons why you feel that too. Just like the adage: Misery loves company. Analyze if the feeling is yours. Remember, this too shall pass and attempt to find out whose emotions you are carrying. It is not always a good idea to badger them with questions about why they are feeling that way. Sometimes people need time to process and they will feel better afterward. Worry about you. Other people are going to feel emotions and it is not your job to fix them.
In a prolonged disaster scenario, there is no telling what emotion will cause people to do. Getting a grip on your emotional status now can help you weather any storm life throws your way. All of this is much easier said than done. However, once you start cognitively realizing what is going on inside, you can change it. Flexing that muscle will make it healthy and give you control of yourself.
Featured Quote From Today's Chapter:
"Sometimes grownups have to do stuff for the benefitof all the people instead of their individual interests."
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