Like a giant scary wave crashing down on us. (riding the wave is a skill for later)
As long as we are going through life on auto-pilot all of those observations are correct.
We learn from our mistakes right?!?! And I have made a ton of them, hence I know so much now.
How about we pump the brakes, slow things down by deconstructing our emotions. Taking a look back at what happened the last time we had a big emotion, we will find there are lots of factors at play rather than "It just happened" , "I can't stop it once it starts", "You made me feel that way" " I wouldn't have yelled if you didn't do <insert whatever action happened that was not your fault, doing or within your control from your perspective of course>. The list goes on and on how we describe emotions that go from 0 to 60 in no time.
- Breaking down what really happens before we get to that emotion. We need to check in with our Vulnerability factors - this is what happened before to make us vulnerable to the prompting event? How was our eating, sleeping, are we stressed, worried, having a rough day, what kind of mood are we in? Retell the story of what led up to the event to yourself.
- Prompting Event (aka. Trigger) - What "set off" the emotion? What happened in the few minutes right before the emotion started? Just the Facts!
- Interpretation - Thoughts, assumptions, appraisals and beliefs about the Prompting Event
- Biological Factors - Face & Body Changes and Experiences: Asking ourselves "What am I or was I feeling in my face and body?" Paying attention to our Action Urges = "What do I or did I feel like doing? What do I or did I want to say?"
- Emotional Response/Urge - Face and Body Language: "What is or was my facial expression? Posture? Gestures?" Expression with words= "What I said" and finally Actions - "What I did! "
- Emotion Name - Naming the emotion now and rating its intensity from 0-100
- After effects - The emotions, behavior, thoughts, etc. arising as a result of all of the above ... the aftermath, the emotional burning building we walked out of or was it effective? Did we slow it down enough to avoid making it worse?
I'm hoping it gets more and more effective as you practice being more mindful and understanding how emotions truly arise. Until next ime ...
Keep trying, you are getting better each day and thanks for reading.