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Newsletter: Fallacy of Controlling Emotions

(Volume 1, Issue 15)

Topic of the week: Fallacy of Controlling Emotions

Emotions are an interesting part of how the world works. They have a large bearing on personal and professional outcomes but are often an invisible hand pulling strings in mysterious ways. Everyone has their own personal relationship with emotions and understanding one's own emotions is a personal journey.

Framing the source and role of emotions is useful first step to understanding them. One important premise is that you can’t directly control your emotions any more than you can directly control the weather. Emotions just happen, like clouds move. Emotions originate from the generations old hard wiring of the lower, reptilian brain (think, fight or flight impulse).

Trying to control emotions, like controlling the weather, is futile. But there are many ways we as humans can access our upper brain and executive function to control how we interpret and respond to them. Our behaviors we are in control of. Recent posts on Related Perspectives draw out the fallacy of controlling emotions and how to frame it for meaningful relationships and work:


Quote of the week

“There is no way to happiness — happiness is the way.”

— Thich Nhat Hanh


Three recent articles

1. Nick Wignall writes about the 7 common mistakes about emotions that even smart people make.

2. Seth Klarman, founder of Baupost Group, wrote an especially thoughtful investor partner letter about investment opportunities and potential changes caused by the surreal COVID-19 pandemic.

3. Lawrence at More to That writes insightful posts on taking different perspectives to common issues. His most recent post on how minds skew perspectives of reality is particularly good.

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