I Feel

I was wondering this morning why “I feel ___ when ___, I need ___.” statements are so hard to use.

My first thought was that being honest means being vulnerable – which can be very hard for many of us. I’m very open about the facts of my life, but I realize I still struggle with sharing my feelings.

Side note, I recently read something about the difference between feelings and emotions.

Emotions, Feelings and…. Proteins? Oh my!

I found this great explanation of various theories of emotion:

List of Emotions: 271 Emotion Words (+ PDF) – The Berkeley Well-Being Institute (berkeleywellbeing.com)j

They don’t distinguish between emotions and feelings however.

This article does a great job of explaining the differences with references:

How to Measure Emotions and Feelings (And the Difference Between Them) (imotions.com)

The TLDR; is that emotions are reactions stemming from the amygdala in response to some input. Feelings are how we interpret those emotions or assign meaning to them in the prefrontal cortex.

Emotional responses last about 30-60 seconds in the body (TEDx source Mandy Saligari), feelings can cause the emotional response to get re-triggered.

Emotions we can learn to tolerate, feelings we can learn to change because they are based on our schemas/thoughts/programming/stories we tell ourselves about both the emotion and the stimulus that triggered it.