So, we spent some time figuring out what emotions are, how we could change them and how we could use them to be productive.  Up until this point we have not established what the core emotions are. Let’s discuss the core emotions that a human can feel. (This is based off Psychologist’s Paul Ekman’s research).


fear core emotions

This is the emotion we feel when we are afraid of a perceived threat.  Something that we actually are scared of causes us to shy away from the object.  The important thing to realize here is that fear is something that is caused by a perceived threat.  Something that is perceived.  Just as you came up with that perception of the object you fear, you can change it to be something you are not scared of.

Example: I used to be fearful of talking to new people.  I perceived talking to new people as a threat because people who I interacted with were mean to me.  From seeing that people were mean to me, I came up with the belief that all new people would be mean making me scared of talking to new people.  If you are a nice person, new people tend to be nice back.  Since then, I have experienced other situations where new people were nice to me. The fear does not exist because I changed the perception


happiness core emotions

This is the emotion we feel when something great happens.  This comes from your satisfaction with your current situation in life and your day to day.  Are you where you want to be? Are you doing the things you enjoy? These things tend to determine happiness.  The problem is, those are external things.  You can learn to be happy at any point in time from internal reasons as well.

Example: Luke is having a bad day, but then he wins the lottery of 570 Million dollars!  He all of the sudden realizes how great of a day he having.  Because he perceived having a lot of money as something that is great, he feels really happy!


sadness core emotions

This is one of the core emotions where we feel we lost something that we care about, we are disappointed or maybe feel like nothing can be done.  Notice once again that the things that cause sadness here are all perceptions.  You perceived the object that was lost and you feel sadness towards it, but if you perceived it as something that you might have to lose then you cannot be sad.

Example: Adam perceived losing his girlfriend as something he never wanted to do.  So when she broke up with him he was extremely sad because he never wanted that to happen.


surprise core emotions

Surprise is an emotion you experience when you do not expect an outcome to happen.  If the outcome was expected then surprise would not have happened. The less likely you expect a scenario to happen to more you will be surprised.

Example: Adam did not perceive his girlfriend breaking up with him, so when she did he was experiencing surprise along with the sadness before. He did not think that would ever happen so when it did he was kinda heart broken.


disgust core emotions

Disgust is the emotion you experience when you experience something you do not like.  This again comes to your preferences which are shaped by your thoughts.  So if you could change your preferences to like anything then theoretically you would never experience disgust.

Example: Kevin came home to eat dinner to notice Brussel sprouts on the kitchen table.  He immediately was disgusted and went to his room.  One time he ate brussel sprouts and they were disgusting so he never wanted to try them again.


anger core emotions

This is the last of the core emotions.  It is the emotion that is felt when you have a strong feeling of being annoyed with something, or something are not happy with.  This feeling of having an intense annoyance can come from what actually annoys or bothers you.  That comes from your preferences once again.

Example: George came to school with his favorite blue shirt.  He was happy to wear it but all of the sudden one of his classmates came up and said how ugly his shirt was.  This made George angry and want to fight him. He cared so much about the shirt and was extremely offended by what the other classmate said.

Notice The Core Emotions

Now that you know what the core emotions are you can pinpoint them in your life as you experience them.  Once you have pinpointed them you can take the necessary action that is needed to handle the emotion.

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