Emotional granularity: Why being able to define your emotions is important

I absolutely love speaking about feelings.

I often felt it to be extremely necessary. Being able to effectively communicate when you are happy, sad, or mad makes life easier, in so many ways. Those around you do not have to guess your feelings. They do not have to assume what you like or dislike, because you are very open and expressive about them.

Now just because my life experiences has left me feeling this way, does not mean the majority of people agree with me. My friends often grumble about my need to be vocal. It seems unnecessary and terribly unproductive to go through so many of one’s feelings.

I often keep my thoughts to myself. Not to please others or hide, but to keep the peace between the people around me. Society likes for everything to be light and easy. As much as I try, it is simply not natural to me. Therefore, this balance of being who I am and going along with society has been quite a battle. Finding the work of Lisa Feldman Barrett became the answer to a question I long ceased asking.

Emotional Granularity

Barrett researches emotional granularity. This is the ability to effectively describe one’s own feelings. Well, I now found a word for the phenomenon I believed in, now to why it’s necessary. Barrett’s research suggests that those who can define their emotions have a modicum of power over them.

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