Cultivating Positive Emotions
Posted: March 31, 2022
Positive emotions hold value and can be encouraged in our lives, here’s some ideas on that.
What emotions do for us
- Negative emotions have value, they highlight and prepare us for difficult situations (usually the next 3-30 seconds)
- Genuine positive emotions have value on their own, they are only related to pleasure, like cousins.
- Physical pleasure tends to narrow attention, and are linked to immediate rewards
- Positive emotions broaden attention and are linked to long term reward systems
10 Positive Emotions
- Joy – Occurs in life where you feel safe and familiar, little effort required. There’s also a quiet joy
- Gratitude – When you receive something beyond what you deserve
- Serenity – Occurs in life where you feel safe and familiar, nothing needs done, as an afterglow emotion
- Interest – Occurs in life where you feel safe and familiar, your attention is drawn to something new, you’re very activated and motivated
- Hope – Occurs in life when circumstances are difficult, you have a belief things can be better
- Pride – Occurs in life when you’ve caused something good to happen
- Amusement – Occurs in life where you feel safe, something is unexpected, and usually there’s a social element
- Inspiration – When we see example of someone modeling the best in human nature
- Love – Includes all of the positive emotions above, adds to them, and is shared
Cultivate Positive Emotions by:
- Remembering when we felt them before
- Acting like we do when we feel them, via actions
- Putting ourselves in situations where we’re most likely to feel them again.
- Being more mindful of what we’re already feeling
- Emotions can’t be forced, only supported and allowed