Emotional Structure (ES)

Terminology

Emotional Structure (ES)

avoid

"Emotional Apparatus"

r

seems overly "mechanistic" although sometimes reflects the actual perception quite well

Related Terms

Personality (Structure)

Definition

In simple terms:

Your Emotional Structure is ...

... the way you react to everything.

stuff happens to us

>> we produce an emotion

... what tells you what is/feels "right" or "wrong" for you.

... your inner reference.

The intrinsic mechanisms present at a given time that produce an emotion as response to a stimulus.

[intrinsic]

The Emotional Structure is by definition located on a deeper functional level than the cognitive/rational/logic parts of our minds.

One's Emotional System is a result of the specific physical properties mainly of the structures of the nervous system, i.e. the brain and peripheral structures, like the plexus solaris and others.

integrate this into definition

The stimulus can be internal or external.

examples

Delay

The time between stimulus and response can vary ...

immediate/spontaneous

even if not expressed immediately

The emotional response can be empty, i.e. there can also be no response.

This can be because ...

... the stimulus

The expression of the emotion can be influenced consciously ...

regarding

time / delay

intensity and form

Other meanings:

The term "emotional structure" is being used in the advertisement industry.

Wiktionary

Why was a different term necessary?

How is "Emotional Structure" different?

processing/defenses

we cannot say:

"Do the emotional labor"

"Just go through it"

... because

it is too much

it is overwhelming

>>

stab

prepare us for emotional labor

otherwise impossible

it does not happen by itself

<<

transgenerational trauma

Applications

Goals

In order to experience a different emotion towards a specific stimulus (and react differently as a consequence of that) one should aim for a change of the Emotional Structure.

Strategies

Changes of the ES

can be achieved through

can only be learned through going the emotional path. and emotional processing.

can not be achieved through

(only) talking / rationalizing about them

Properties

Features of the ES:

Empathy

m

//

Numbness

m

consistent

your current emotional structure is always the result of genetically predetermined factors and the influences on the growth process over a whole lifetime

the result as a whole cannot be precisely separated - what was there and what came from experiences

however, sometimes we can deduce this quite precisely

and we should not be afraid of it

clinicians would say that what some perceive a character trait is actually a symptom

it gets confusing when genetical/physical predispositions increase the susceptibility to react to certain stimuli in a specific way

more vulnerable

more resilience

The Musical Instrument Metaphor

Our ES can be compared to a musical instrument:

The fingers, playing the instrument represent the external stimulus.

The instrument itself reflects the ES.

The resulting sound represents the emotion that is produced by the ES.

Like for the sound of most instruments, the emotions which our ES produces are shaped by external factors:

Many instruments are sensitive to temperature and humidity, among other things.

In the same way, there are many influencing factors for our ES.

l

Growth

Becoming

...

Change

Types / Directions

increase of Empathy

/ sensitivity

decrease of Empathy

Numbing / increase in (emotional) numbness

Principles

the experience of pain is the main reason for changes of one's emotional structure

both an increase and decrease of empathy are happening exclusively through the experience of pain:

an unconstructive experience of pain, i.e. associated with helplessness, being overwhelmed etc. leads to a decrease of the ability to experience Empathy

a constructive experience of pain, i.e. happening in a context of sufficient emotional resources, etc. the Emotional Structure will change towards the ability to experience more Empathy

it is central to Emotional Processing to purposefully create these

One's emotional structure cannot be changed by "wanting" or "deciding" so.

Popular belief is different:

There are countless examples in popular culture to express the notion that "I want to feel less (or more)", for example. The fact that this is expressed to frequently might lead us to believe that it could work. In fact, it does not. The expressions describe the emotional situation of a person and the pain which this person experiences may or may not cause the change, but the "wishing"/"wanting" of the same had little to do with it.

The emotional structure of a person changes over a lifetime by natural processes or maturing. This is influenced by environmental factors which include interpersonal relationships (also with animals) above all.

short-term

mostly attributed to influencing factors

l

long-term

define

it can change - it is not constant

Processing of emotions is an example to deliberately catalyze a change in the emotional structure

Processing (of Emotions)

m

Change "naturally" happens related to growth

Growth

m

Influencing Factors

Physical state of the body

hormonal state

etc.

Maturity

m

a person's emotional structure can have all degrees of maturity - the scale is continuous

Features of a mature Emotional Structure:

You produce tenderness when perceiving vulnerability.

...

Sign of a mature Emotional Structure: You produce tenderness when perceiving vulnerability."--MB

m

Empathy

m

Maturity

m

Tenderness

Vulnerability

Classification

Maturity is a qualifying feature of someone's Emotional Structure.

Post-Traumatic Emotional Structure (PTES)

Definition

Features

"emotional structure"

"don't tell me how to feel"

emotions can work against our interest = they usually have a root in trauma

How to change one's emotional structure

almost never

rational

cognitive

the more we dissect it the more we can avoid the emotional labor

ES that is characterized by "trauma" will not change by itself

or

in that area

has parts

we can be mature about one thing
very immature in another

ex.

lawyer who is in abusive rel.

rational approaches

exhaustion

"I have talked about it - I don't want it anymore."

I have cried so much.

illusion of understanding = change

/understood it/figured it out..."

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