How I Work
For me, the more I understand how something works, the greater my ability to manage it. I apply this line of reasoning with emotion management using the theory of constructed emotions. Neuroscience, even science in general, can be complicated to understand. This is why I use concepts from cooking–the construction of a recipe by a chef–to explain the science behind how our brain predicts our emotions. This helps to make the strategies we create together easier to consume, digest and apply in daily life.
Yes, the pun was intended.
Once you get the fundamental of these concepts, applying them in your life with family, friends, employees, co-workers and strangers is where the you and I can strategize.
Our brain sits in a dark room trying to make sense of the world using sensory data from our outside world (sight, sounds, smells, taste, etc) and from our inside world. The sense of how we feel inside of our bodies is called interoception. It plays a key role in our perception and emotion management.
What I call Emotion Recipes, are what the brain uses to predict our emotional responses. All of our past experiences are stored in our subconscious and can be used for future prediction of our emotions, reactions, thoughts and decisions. The brain makes errors and can correct for it, only if we consciously change the recipe. The idea behind this is very intuitive, but also nuanced in how the brain uses the sensory data it receives.
Have you ever try to cook a meal with a faulty oven, not the right utensils, or not enough energy? Our body, aka the Kitchen, has the tools to help the brain with cooking up our Emotion Recipes. However the brain needs a healthy budget of energy—the body's currency—too keep the kitchen running and to be more effective at its job. Learning how we budget energy and maintain our "Kitchen" is very important to our emotional wellbeing.
A cook follows known recipes to prepare food. A chef is is trained to understand flavors, cooking techniques, create recipes from scratch with fresh ingredients, and have a high level of responsibility within a kitchen. We learn to "cook" our emotion recipes from a very young age, however I am inviting you to become an Emotion Chef. Emotion Chefs hone their ability to identify the flavors of their emotions, allowing them to better manage them.