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Hi, I'm Graham. I had 18 years of formal education - that's 12 years of primary and high school, and then another six years at university studying engineering - and during that time, I learnt a lot about how to think but very little about how to feel or how my emotions worked.
In fact, I can't remember in that entire time a single class where I sat down and had a teacher teach me how my emotions work.
Now, possibly maybe in art classes or in music classes or maybe even in English they might've come close, but really nothing all that direct and concrete.
And that's a shame because, fundamentally as humans, we're all driven by our emotions. All our behavior is an attempt to either move towards pleasure or move away from pain.
So emotions are absolutely key to getting what we want in life. They're also the key to a successful relationship, especially with women.
So in the rest of this article, I'm going to give you a quick introduction into how your emotions work.
Many of us guys lack a basic emotional literacy; we have physical sensations when we're feeling something, but we often don't know how to identify what we're feeling, nor are we able to recognise emotions in other people. Being able to identify emotions is the basis of empathy, which is a core communication skill.
Many of you may have heard of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, or PTSD. Whilst there is no standard definition of PTSD, it is generally agreed that PTSD is an anxiety disorder that occurs when a person sees their life flash before their eyes. For example they are involved in, or witness, a near death incident, or a series of events resulting in them having the perception that life as they know it, is about to end.
Emotional overload in these circumstances causes the primitive region of the brain called the limbic region, responsible for brains involvement in emotions, to recalibrate in order to cope. PTSD occurs when the brain doesn’t go back to normal operation of its own accord.
So why talk about PTSD here?
Well it gives a great extreme example of emotions at play within us. You may not suffer from it, but you may demonstrate some of the same characteristics. This is very normal, and has occurred for the same reasons as someone with ‘the bug’ (I use the term bug, because it highlights that you can get over the disorder to live a normal life) – self defence.
There are many elements involved with a person suffering from PTSD, but one of the major ones is their emotions.… Continue reading…