If you want to figure out the structure of space, you need the geometry of the space, and if you are emotionally lost you need The Atlas of The Hearts.
Welcome to the world of hearts and I'm excited to be on this adventure with you!
Before we start I want to ask myself why I started this journey of the heart:
"When I was growing up, there was a lot of unpredictable behavior and intense emotion in our home. There was intense love and there was intense rage. There was intense laughter and intense hurt. But even the good times were dicey because they could turn in an instant. "
This resonated with me, I had the same experience with my family and because of this, I have become such a person with short and intense emotions. Sometimes I did some things I shouldn't do, but I just can't help to control my behavior, and so I keep losing so I desperately hope to learn what's wrong.
Heart is sea,
language is shore.
Whatever sea includes,
will hit the shore.
I am an introvert but I haven't done a lot of introspection, I mean the real introspection. I guess part of being introverted is knowing myself and finding where I am and that drives me to open this book.
The First Place: When things are uncertain or too much
We feel stressed when we evaluate environmental demand as beyond our ability to cope successfully. This includes elements of unpredictability, uncontrollability, and feeling overloaded.
Our emotional reaction is tied to our cognitive assessment of whether we can cope with the situation. Navigating stressors is a daily part of living.
Overwhelmed means an extreme level of stress, an emotional and/or cognitive intensity to the point of feeling unable to function.
This is an experience where our emotions are intense, our focus on them is moderate, and our clarity about exactly what we’re feeling is low enough that we get confused when trying to identify or describe the emotions.
Our lives are somehow unfolding faster than the human nervous system and psyche are able to manage well.--Jon Kabat-Zinn
Therapy： Mindful play, or No-agenda, Non-doing time
Doing nothing is the only way back for someone totally overwhelmed
Feeling stressed and feeling overwhelmed seems to be related to our perception of how we are coping with our current situation and our ability to handle the accompanying emotions: Am I coping? Can I handle this? Am I inching toward the quicksand?
Escalating loss of control, worst-case-scenario thinking and imagery, and total uncertainty. Anxiety can be both a state( temporary condition) and a trait( long-term characteristic).
Intolerance for uncertainty( in the future) is an important contributing factor to all types of anxiety. Those who are generally uncomfortable with uncertainty are more likely to experience anxiety.
Our anxiety often leads to one of two coping mechanisms: worry or avoidance.
Worry is described as a chain of negative thoughts about bad things that might happen in the future. Worry is not an emotion; it’s the thinking part of anxiety.
You believe worrying is helpful for coping (it is not), believe it is uncontrollable (which means we don’t try to stop worrying), and try to suppress worry thoughts (which actually strengthens and reinforces worry).
You want to feel comfortable, so you avoid doing or saying the thing that will evoke fear and other difficult emotions.
Avoidance will make you feel less vulnerable in the short run, but it will never make you less afraid
An energized state of enthusiasm leading up to or during an enjoyable activity
One important strategy when we’re in these feelings is to take a deep breath and try to determine whether we’re feeling anxiety or excitement.
Dread occurs frequently in response to high-probability negative events; its magnitude increases as the dreaded event draws nearer.
Fear is a negative, short-lasting, high-alert, rapid-fire emotion in response to a perceived threat, and, like anxiety, it can be measured as a state or trait. Fear arises when we need to respond quickly to physical or psychological danger that is present and imminent.
“Throughout evolutionary history, anxiety and fear have helped every species to be wary and to survive. Fear can signal us to act, or, alternatively, to resist the impulse to act. It can help us to make wise, self-protective choices in and out of relationships where we might otherwise sail mindlessly along, ignoring signs of trouble.” --Dr. Harriet Lerner
Vulnerability is the emotion that we experience during times of uncertainty, risk, and emotional exposure.
We were raised to believe that being vulnerable is being weak, but in fact, courage requires the willingness to lean into uncertainty, risk, and emotional exposure.
Vulnerability is not weakness; it’s our greatest measure of courage.
Vulnerability is not oversharing, it’s sharing with people who have earned the right to hear our stories and our experiences.
Sentences & Words Bank
increases in cortisol 皮质醇
escalating升级 escalating tensions 不断升级的紧张局势 escalating conflict冲突升级
understatement轻描淡写 understatement of the year 轻描淡写的一年
trying to get pregnant after my second miscarriage 第二次流产后
I‘m inching toward quicksand 缓慢的走向流沙
Our lives are somehow unfolding faster than the human nervous system and psyche/spirit are able to manage well.
We don’t process other emotional information accurately when we feel overwhelmed, and this can result in poor decision-making
Some of us feel ... mainly in response to certain situations, while some of us can be naturally more predisposed to ... than others.
Approximately one-third of people will be affected by ... disorder in their lifetime; however, it is estimated that fewer than half of people with diagnosable ... disorders seek any type of professional treatment.
I know that therapy has been essential for me in terms of recognizing and understanding my reactions and developing techniques for working through ...
We absolutely can learn how to control it, and rather than suppressing it, we need to dig into and address the emotion driving the thinking.
Avoidance often spends a lot of energy zigzagging around and away from that thing that already feels like it’s consuming us.
How the Chapter Changed Me
How my life / behaviour / thoughts / ideas have changed as a result of reading the book.
• I used to respond to the pain in my life by avoidance. I knew this will make things worse but I just tried in vain to save myself. Now I finally understand that the reason is I‘m uncomfortable with the uncertainty of the future( anxiety) and I use avoidance as a weapon to eliminate this uncomfortable feeling. Avoidance is by no means a way to solve the anxiety, instead, taking a deep breath and figuring the source of uncertainty out is the first step of a solution. Then, think about which part of the whole uncertainty is within my grasp or can be grasped with effort, and which part is completely out of my control. Be confident about the certainty and forget about the latter.
• I convinced myself that I was able to deal with the noise of my life but I was deaf to my inner voice. I hardly ever use social media because I'm afraid of rejection due to my excess and suppressed desire of sharing. Vulnerability is not weakness; it’s our greatest measure of courage. -- That really touched me. Don't be ashamed to show your vulnerability, that doesn't mean weakness.
So I am planning to share my experience in the process of pursuing a better version of myself, and I believe the display of my feeling or thought will help me connect the courage. Embrace Your Vulnerability and Take Your Stride.
• All of the emotions, no matter positive or negative, need to be understood and respected. We need to get along with them, learn from them and accept them.
#2 Places We Go When We Compare
Comparison, Admiration, Reverence, Envy, Jealousy, Resentment, Schadenfreude, Freudenfreude
Comparison is the crush of conformity from one side and competition from the other—it’s trying to simultaneously fit in and stand out.
We feel admiration when someone’s abilities, accomplishments, or character inspires us, or when we see something else that inspires us, like art or nature.
Admiration often leads to us wanting to improve ourselves.
Reverence, adoration, worship, or veneration, is a deeper form of admiration or respect and is often combined with a sense of meaningful connection with something greater than ourselves.
While admiration fosters self-betterment, reverence fosters a desire for connection to what we revere—we want to move closer to that thing or person.
Envy occurs when we want something that another person has.
Hostility and a desire for denigration are sometimes part of envy.
Jealousy is when we fear losing a relationship or a valued part of a relationship, such as attention, affection, or resources, that we already have.
Jealousy applies to all kinds of interpersonal relationships.
When envy or jealousy occurs, ask yourself:
Am I fearful of losing something I value to another person, or do I want something someone else has?
If I want something that someone else has, do I want to see them lose it, or is it not about that?
If I’m scared I’m losing something important to me, what kind of conversation do I need to have with that person?
It occurs when we fail to set boundaries or ask for what we need, or when expectations let us down because they were based on things we can’t control, like what other people think, what they feel, or how they’re going to react. Resentment is part of envy related to perceived unfairness or injustice.
When we start to feel resentful
❌What is that person doing wrong?
❌What should they be doing?
✔What do I need but am afraid to ask for?
Schaden in German means harm, and freude means joy.
Schadenfreude, which involves counter-empathy, means pleasure or joy derived from someone else’s suffering or misfortune.
It’s the enjoyment of another’s success. It’s also a subset of empathy.
Good friends aren’t afraid of your light.
Practical advice for consciously training freudenfreude：
a. Shoy: Showing interest and asking follow-up questions when someone shares something great that’s happened to them.
b. Bragitude: Expressing gratitude in words toward the listener when we share personal successes.
Sentences & Words Bank
More often than not,通常情况下
Our hardwiring makes us default to . . default缺省状态
When the student is ready, the teacher appears
appraisals评价：an act of assessing something or someone.
pang:a sudden sharp pain or painful emotion. a sharp pang of guilt
more dire consequences更可怕的后果 dire=terrible
Out of the blue出乎意料的是
How the Chapter Changed Me
• I have suffered resentment for many years. I used to always feel resentful towards my original family and not even have contact with one of my family members for a long time, which is totally unethical in conventional morality. Whenever I think of this person, I get furious with myself for thinking of this person then I force myself to conceal my emotions, so it's hard for me to think clearly about where our relationship is going. Until the disaster of the China Eastern Airlines crash, I saw an article on Wechat. At the end of the article, the author asked what you would do if it was the last hour of your life. I made a comment: "I will spend 20 minutes deleting my internet trace and 20 min deleting the lines I recorded on my phone that I‘m ashamed to post on social media. Finally, I will spend the last 20 min having a call to this person.” Coincidentally I am reading the resentment part of this chapter while the image of this person lingers in my mind. (It also echoes a sentence in this chapter: When the student is ready, the teacher appears.) Then I reconnected with this person and the whole process was peaceful without any anger and I found that what I regarded as the hardest was so easy. Now I still haven't figured out what kind of lack my resentment stems from or maybe I just refuse to think in deeply or recognize but it doesn't matter. What's really matter is that I'm no longer paranoid about resentment.
• The part of freudenfreude inspired me to think new about leadership. I thought how willing others were to follow you showed how much leadership you had--it's wrong. Leadership involves not only influence but serve and protection. A real leader values helping people and celebrating other's success above all else. Because you couldn't carry your team to victory forever, instead, you can service as fuel for driving the team toward success.
#3 Places We Go When Things Don’t Go as Planned
Boredom, Disappointment, Expectations, Regret, Discouragement, Resignation, Frustration
Boredom is the uncomfortable state of wanting to engage in satisfying activity, but being unable to do it.
If we have more control and autonomy over the boring tasks, we may feel sluggish.
If we have little autonomy and control over the boring tasks, we are more likely to feel frustration or irritation.
Boredom is your imagination calling to you.--Sherry Turkle
Disappointment is unmet expectations. It didn’t work out how we wanted, and we believe the outcome was outside of my control.
There are two categories of expectations：
a. Unexamined and Unexpressed Expectation (aka Stealth Expectations)：
b. Examined and Expressed Expectations
Try to reality-check stealth expectations and make them explicit.
There are too many people in the world today who decide to live disappointed rather than risk feeling disappointment.
It takes courage to reality-check, communicate, and dig into the intentions behind our expectations, but that exercise in vulnerability helps us maintain meaningful connections with ourselves and others.
With regret, we believe the outcome was caused by our decisions or actions.
Regret emerged as a function of empathy, when used constructively, it’s a call to courage and a path toward wisdom.
You are losing the motivation and confidence to persist or to make any effort in what you want.
You've lost the motivation and confidence to persist or to make any effort in what you want.
Your desired outcome is blocked and you don’t think we can fix the situation.
These confuse me actually.
Sentences & Words Bank
It can wind us up让我们情绪激动
The more bored I get, the more ideas bubble to the surface
Stealth隐身 a stealth bomber 隐形轰炸机
feel validated 感到被认可
How the Chapter Changed Me
If we don't risk feeling disappointment, we will live disappointed.
I totally agree with the disappointment part cause I've always painted pictures in my head but turned out to let me down. I don't know who to reality-check with since the display of expectation takes courage and shows vulnerability, so I am still living disappointed instead of taking risk of feeling disappointment. Maybe I should go out of my comfort zone, but it takes time and I hope I could conquer my weakness at some point in the future.
#4 Places We Go When It’s Beyond Us
Awe, Wonder, Confusion, Curiosity, Interest, Surprise
Awe is an emotion in response to nature, art, music, and spiritual experiences.
Awe leads people to cooperate, share resources, and sacrifice for others and causes them to fully appreciate the value of others and see themselves more accurately, evoking humility.
Wonder shares a similar emotion with awe but it fuels our passion for exploration and learning, for curiosity and adventure.
Confusion has the potential to motivate, lead to deep learning, and trigger problem solving. By resolving confusion you need to seek help, find the most important information, monitor progress, and plan a strategy.
Curiosity seems to be both a trait and a state. Curiosity is recognizing a gap in our knowledge about something that interests us, and becoming emotionally and cognitively invested in closing that gap through exploration and learning.
Choosing to be curious is choosing to be vulnerable because it requires us to surrender to uncertainty.
With interest, our mind is open to seeing what’s there, but with curiosity, we’ve acknowledged a gap in what we know or understand, and our hearts and head are both invested in closing that gap.
Surprise is an interruption caused by information that doesn’t fit with our current understanding or expectations.
Sentences & Words Bank
As a result, we turn to self-protection—choosing certainty over curiosity, armor over vulnerability, knowing over learning.
an epistemic emotion: an emotion critical to knowledge acquisition and learning.一种认知情绪
epistemic: relating to knowledge or to the degree of its validation.
How the Chapter Changed Me
• The definition of awe recalls my perspectives on travel. For me, there are two meanings of travel. The first is to have a deeper understanding and experience of the culture and the custom of a place after I have learned some basic knowledge about this place by reading the related books or articles. The other is to experience, how people overcome difficulties in nature， how much power people create by helping each other, and what kind of miracle story people share. Now I understand that the latter comes from the awe of nature.
•The first time I learned quantum mechanics I saw Niels Bohr saying that "If you are not completely confused by quantum mechanics, you do not understand it." since it is so counterintuitive. The more you feel confused the more likely you break the barriers of your mind. That's why we need to be vigilant when we feel like we know everything.