Flipping Your Lid and Emotional Control

I apologise for blogging twice in one day but I learned some things yesterday that are too good not to share.  If I’d been less tired last night I would have rescheduled this mornings post to make way for this one.

Yesterday I started at the University of Cambridge studying post grad Child and Adolescent Counselling.  As part of the lectures we learned about the brain and it’s propensity to flip it’s lid sometimes in reaction to emotional overwhelm.  Here Dr Daniel Siegel explains it really well as it relates to children and parenting.  However sometimes I feel like I’m parenting myself now that I’ve put down the booze pacifier!

As part of our mindfulness practice we were advised to pause and reflect if we found ourselves experiencing difficult emotions and to take time to name the feeling.  As Dr Siegel says ‘if we name it, we tame it’.  This is a tip from neuroscience as naming your feeling engages a different brain activity and gets your brain to recognise its own reaction and releases a big part of the emotional charge. This seems simplistic but is very efficient when you need to restore emotional equilibrium if it is wobbling and you are about to flip your lid! 😉

I will continue to share anything that I learn about mindfulness here that I think might be useful to you too.  More sober tools for the toolbox 🙂

11 thoughts on “Flipping Your Lid and Emotional Control

  1. love that hand model of the brain, thank you! I am SO going to use that one on my kids (and myself 🙂 )

    bet your brain is whizzing with all the new stimuli! how exciting! xx

    1. I know Prim it’s ace isn’t it? 🙂 When the tutor did this in our session I was like ‘man that is so simple but so clever’ – gotta share that 😉 Brain is fried and to do list is long including daily mindfulness practice that we have to journal about to hand in as part of the course assessment. Exciting but daunting! xx

  2. That was really interesting, and I will definitely try it, thanks Lou! Far too much lid flipping chez MTM at times 😉 I like that idea of “if you name it, you tame it” … it seems to tie in a lot with other ideas I have been reading about allowing myself to pause, and to observe the emotion, to understand what it is but not to judge it, as a way of not getting lost in it or having my behaviours driven by it, which I guess is basically the same as the lid flipping bit. Good luck with the course 🙂 xx

    1. You’re welcome MTM 🙂 Far too much lid flipping chez HOF household too! They talk a great deal about compassionate curiousity so pausing and looking at not just what is happening but why? xx

      1. I like that. Sounds a lot like Tara Brach talking about “compassionate awareness” – she talks about the two wings of radical acceptance being mindfulness, an awareness of what you are doing, and lovingkindness, holding that awareness in a compassionate heart. Or something like that. TBH I need to read “radical acceptance” again, as galloped through it! Not one of those you can read and then just go, OK, I’ve got that now. xx

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