Introduction to Emotions and Their 4 Building Blocks

accepting emotions posterEmotions; what are they?

We know enough about emotions to define them accurately. People talk about being happy or sad because they grew up with these concepts. Understanding an emotion can seem complicated, and explaining what emotions you are experiencing is difficult. 

Before we explore more about emotions, a definition is in order.

  1. A strong feeling deriving from circumstances, mood, or relationships with others.
  2. Instinctive, or intuitive response, as distinguished from reasoning or knowledge:

How many different emotions do we have? This study suggests we have at least 27 categories of emotions in a range of gradients. 

On top of that, every emotion is made up of four building blocks. 

Now before I go on you might be interested in my Be Inspired page where you will find my Sunday Affirmations each week. Click on the button below and give us a thumbs up to join other Be-Inspired Enthusiasts.

Here is a Relay of our latest Zoom Live Training. 8 Ways to Maintain a Positive Mindset.

"Repressed and suppressed feelings require counter-energy to keep them submerged. It takes energy to hold down our feelings. As these feelings are relinquished, the energy that had been holding down the negativity is now freed for constructive uses."

Emotions: The Stimulus

Emotions posterFor an emotion to happen, you need something which will inspire it.

This can be anything at all. Generally, emotions come from outside sources, though they can also arise from your thoughts. You never know what might trigger an emotion; – a smell, a taste, a memory, a person, a place, or even an activity you’re taking part in will bring about emotion.

Even babies will be inspired to emotion through simple things like being hungry, uncomfortable, amused, or even by the smell or sound of their caregiver.

When the stimulus is triggered, we have two choices, We can manifest an emotion like anger, or we can choose to let go of that emotion.

“You feel the upset before it happens, and the work is to get to work before the expression of the feelings.” Source: Getting In The Gap by Wayne Dyer

Learn more by reading Living Untethered by Michael Singer.

Emotions: Your Awareness

Poster about emotions A situation alone won’t be enough to cause emotion. At some point, your mind becomes aware of internal feelings. These can be conscious or even unconscious things.

We start paying attention, as Michael Singer says; we make it personal. Now, this stimulus suddenly matters to us in a way the other things around us don’t.

When we make it personal, we lose our detachment. We literally decide to be offended, insulted, angry, or any one of a whole gambit of emotions.

Developing awareness of our triggers allows us to do the spot, stop and swap exercises as suggested by Jay Shetty in his book, Think Like a Monk,

Emotions: The Judgement

Your physical self is already figuring out the situation and is responding.

For example, you might not have noticed the spider that just scuttled across your hand, but your eyes have widened significantly, and you might have felt a chill.

This is followed very closely by the physical reaction (in this case, pulling your hand away) and possibly even a verbal expression (a scream, perhaps, if you’re afraid of spiders).

Deep breathing exercises are an excellent way of reducing a stimulus repose reaction.

See our recent article “Deep Breathing for Rapid Stress Relief.

Emotions: The Reaction

Are you okay with this stimulus? 

Your unconscious self already knows your likes and dislikes and is already steering you toward; either a positive or negative emotional response.

All anxiety, tension, and psychological problems come from our habit of holding onto things that happened in the past., By suppressing or expressing (anger) rather than accepting. From Living Untethered.

Many of us have become addicted to some emotions. They give us an adrenaline high, as an example. We want to indulge this emotion. 

Why is this important?

If you want to change your feelings, start with these building blocks.

You’ll always have a stimulus, and your awareness of things isn’t always within your control.

But how you feel about the stimulus can be reshaped.

Go back to the spider example. If you don’t want to be afraid of spiders, you might rehearse a different reaction, starting with a new judgment.

You tell yourself spiders aren’t scary and try not to react when you see one. Eventually, you won’t feel the ‘fear’ anymore but might move to disinterest or even curiosity when you see a spider.

This takes time, but taking control of your emotions is invaluable.

The key?

Be consistent as you work on this change; soon, it will come naturally.

The tools we use to learn to let go of our emotions, our fears, and our insecurities remain the same.

Daily practice is the answer, using positive affirmations, gratitude, and mindfulness that help us become aware of our triggers and meditation which allows us to explore the deeper roots of our reactions. 


Next Steps

Explore some of the books suggested in this article.

Listed below are my top five books for starting a true inner transformation through the art of letting go of emotions.

Living Untethered by Michael Singer

Think Like a Monk by Jay Shetty

In the Flow of Life by Eric Butterworth

Letting Go: The Pathway of Surrender by David Hawkins

Becoming Supernatural by Joe Dispenza

The Journaling Solution

One effective way to learn about your own emotions and how they are triggered is to Journal.

This self-reflection exercise helps us explore the full range and gradient of our emotions. With this comes awareness, and with awareness comes the ability to choose a response rather than react or act out our emotions. 


Nick Grimshawe


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My name is Nick Grimshawe. I help people seeking to live extraordinary lives to use the tools of affirmations, gratitude, mindfulness, and Meditation to live the life they envision.

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