Human emotion is a strong response coming out of our mental activities. Emotion itself is only a brain function; it is neither positive nor negative. Fear makes you avoid danger, resentment makes you fight, and loving makes you care for others. People cannot remove their emotions from the brain functions. That’s why it is not a good idea to suppress emotions or ignore them; they will eventually damage the body and relationships with others.
There are two things people can do with their emotions. One is admitting emotions, the other is regulating them. Admitting and regulating emotions are possible when people don’t drown in their emotions. Emotion is not an ocean; it is a wave. It is not the whole; it is a response on the surface. Just like waves rise always on the surface of the ocean, people feel emotion rising all the time. Being emotional is a very natural phenomenon in the body, but what’s important is how to process it.
People’s emotions are changed by their hormones, and people’s happiness and unhappiness are influenced by their hormones. Men and women, when they love each other, have pounding hearts and are happy. In the end, that’s about information. When certain information is input into our brains, we become happy or unhappy as a result.
That’s why we say that our bodies are chemical factories that secrete hormones. The human brain secretes hormones as a result of certain information. For example, good hormones are always produced in the brains of those who continually receive praise. Consequently, they live with confidence. Those who are continually nagged frequently lose confidence, are fearful of people, and cringe even at the sight of people. Bad hormones are secreted when they just think about being nagged. When this happens, certain functions of the brain can even be destroyed.
So I thought, “I can cause the secretion of hormones through information! Wouldn’t it be great if we could just produce the hormones we want?” And I always say that I am the owner of my brain and emotions. I can watch my emotions rising and process them as an owner. If we don’t realize that we are the owners of our brains, our fickle emotion will take over and become the owner of our brains. We should use our brains proactively as an owner.
We usually think emotion comes from outside of our body and we respond to it. Of course, emotion comes from outside stimulation, but how we respond to it depends on how we use our brains. If we use our brains well, we can develop a natural ability to not be swept away by our emotions.
Because happiness is hormonal, we don’t need to wait for happiness in life, we can make our body produce good hormones. Everybody can create happiness knowing this theory.
When neurotransmitters secrete well, information transfers well in the brain. Serotonin is a neurotransmitter that contributes to the feeling of happiness. I want to call it “happy” hormone or “peace” messenger. Serotonin increases when we are creative, and it decreases when we are stressed. When serotonin secretes less than normal levels, people can have trouble managing stress and get easily angry or depressed.
If you feel comfortable — peaceful and joyful — serotonin secretes well. Meditation can help to make us feel comfortable, peaceful, and joyful. Or, if we say it the other way around, any activity that increases serotonin can be a good meditation.
Meditation is not a difficult thing to do. Meditation is not only sitting in a lotus posture and breathing, but also laughing, praising, and loving. You don’t need to stick to a certain posture or form of meditation. If meditation helps activate your brain function and you can feel healthy, happy, and peaceful from the meditation, then that is the best meditation for you. Meditation is giving positive stimulation to the brain besides the habitual and daily stimulation. If you build a sense of meditating, you can meditate in your daily activities.
Sit down on the chair or the floor with your back straight. Shake your head side to side. Start with tapping your lower abdomen with your two fists and continue for three to five minutes. You will feel warmth in your lower abdomen and your head refreshed. And you will produce saliva in your mouth.
This is the condition of happiness that serotonin produces in your body. This simple way is called “brain wave vibration” meditation. Please make your brain overflow with serotonin from this simple method and create your happiness in any time and situation.
This article is updated from its initial publication in Brain World Magazine’s print edition.
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- How Emotions Are Made: A Q&A with Dr. Lisa Feldman Barrett
- Mind the Gap: Unlocking Your Own Creativity
- The Importance Of Play: An Interview with Dr. Jaak Panksepp
- Stepping Up Your Creativity: Walking, Meditation, and the Creative Brain
- Why A Television Anchor Turned to Meditation: A Q&A with Dan Harris