Human emotions are a complex thing, and understanding their complexity is not as easy as they may seem. Human emotions are a vast and very, very intriguing concept, and understandably there are many common myths surrounding them. The general consensus might not always align with the real truth of it.
No matter how different you are from everyone else, emotions are what makes you human, yet, it’s probably the one thing that you have the most trouble comprehending. Now the million-dollar question is that if you don’t understand your own emotions, then how can you ever expect to feel them in all their glory? How will you understand what they are trying to tell you?
Here Are The 10 Common Myths About Emotions You Should Know
1. Not being able to control what you feel.
When you feel something, you are feeling a sense of judgment, i.e. your emotional response and experience is a result of how YOU are interpreting the event, rather than how it actually is. The interesting thing is your beliefs might not always be accurate and spot-on.
Different people interpret and react to something differently; it might be the same situation, but not everyone is going to judge it in the same way. For example, when someone dies it causes grief to someone, and that signifies that the dead person was important to them, but someone else might not feel the same way. If a situation is outrageous to someone, it means they perceive it like that. If there is no sort of appraisal to an event, it signifies that there is zero emotion.
Without examining the psychology behind someone’s thinking and why they react to something the way they do, it is not possible to know the truth. It’s not a surprise that cognitive-behavioral therapy is based on the notion that emotional pain is a result of irrational or distorted thinking.
2. It’s impossible to express emotions in words.
No, it’s really not impossible to express your emotions in words. While it may be true that human language is not evolved enough for an “inner experience”, that does not mean emotions can never be described.
As explained above, emotions are basically judgment, and that makes it possible to analyze and describe them in fair detail. Kids are frequently asked to express how they feel when they are emotional, sad, angry or upset, by their teachers and parents. Studies have shown that expressing fear and anger, instead of bottling them up can tremendously help with self-control.
The moment you put your feelings into words, your brain’s control system (inhibition) gets activated, and accordingly decreases your emotional reactions.
3. Emotions and feelings are the same thing.
Noted neuroscientist Antonio Damasio believes that feelings are a kind of bodily experience caused by an emotional response. Feelings and any kind of emotional reactions require a certain level of awareness, i.e. they are not just intellectual, as they get registered in human consciousness.
If emotions are perceived as simply bodily feelings, then there would be no scope for reflection; what you feel is just a tiny part of the picture, and is not the whole picture in itself.