Labeling your emotions can help you feel better.
When you feel a surge of emotion say to yourself ‘this is anger’, ‘this is anxiety’, ‘this is grief’.
Labeling your emotions will help you feel less overwhelmed by them. Bhuddism teaches that we manage our emotions better when we label experiences. Science is catching up.
Researchers at UCLA used specialist MRI techniques to see how the brain changed when people labelled their emotions.
They saw more activity in the ventrolateral prefrontal cortex, the part of the brain that processes emotion and inhibits behavior, and less activity in the amygdala, which is linked to emotional reactions. The amygdala becomes very active when we feel stressed, by labeling emotions the amygdala stayed calmer.
This also happens in traditional meditation. With a mediation practice emotions will feel they roll of your shoulders a little more easily.
Sounds simple… and it is simple. The next time you’re feeling overwrought naming your emotions can help you feel calmer. Those who label emotions feel less fearful, sad, pained or stressed.
‘this is curiosity’ ‘this is ready to give it a try’
Image courtesy of ‘Ambro’ freedigitaimages.net