Why not go for the head ? : Mood Freezing

Why not go for the head ? : Mood Freezing

With the new work from home trend and the changing lives in the corona time, the only constant emotion felt by us sapiens after fear is ‘Anger’. Losing the hashtag life trend of clubbing late at night to the banana bread recipe at home can be frustrating, when your opponent is a tiny microscopic crowned ball with a better controversy drama story than any of us. The dodging balance of the Insta perfect lives being threatened on a daily basis has planted the seeds of psychological stress at perfect place in our heads and is timely watered in the correct proportions of negative thoughts and anger. But what if I say, lashing out can cause you more harm than relief?

Back in 1984, when a few psychologists while experimenting came up with a term ‘Mood freeze’, the emotional brain discovered a new and an easy escape to the very impatient emotion: Anger. According to the empirical evidence it was inferred how our brain is easily fooled by the placebo pills apparently helping us to calm. In the experiment the subjects after being deliberately annoyed were given placebo pills which according to the instructions were supposed to calm them or at least make them believe the same. To make it clear placebo pills are commonly used in psychological experiments acting as a dummy pill usually not affecting the subjects. Being straightforward here, the subject is persuaded by the experimenters that he/she is having an issue and consequently the fake pill is given, in order to make them feel better'. After some time the subject eventually feels good. It was never actually the pill that had shown its potential to make them feel better rather the power of their own mind. So, what does this mean for the concept of ‘catharsis’? Well, it can be answered by the explanation of how it helps us provide a temporary relief from the instant lashing out of the strong suppressed emotion which can be better resolved with a calm mind.

Always venting emotions has not been an aiding in the process of emotional healing. Emotional ventilation is just a transient relief for all the passionate emotions and aches one is experiencing. In the long term, it is capable of turning you into an emotional ventilator, harming your connections, genuinely dependent on others. Actually, it can just upgrade your aggression levels as well. So why go with the sinking ship!

Well, the very famous “you should have gone for the head” moment would have lost its importance, if ‘Thor’ knew about Mood freezing. The primary advantage of this mind freezing idea is that there is no need to lament any stuff that was blurted out accidentally, when emotional vulnerability was at its peak. Here are a few non aggressive alternatives to have a happy life:

  1. Acceptance of the situation: Focusing more on what you can control as it very smoothly sweeps away your focus off negative, making the other factors less disturbing. Acceptance takes time but it eventually comes in. Sometimes we need to get past the situation to fully understand it.
  2. Relaxation practice: Developing the method that work the best for you, like going for a walk, taking a massage, listening to music. Every person has their own method to choose. It isn’t necessary what works for someone, may work for the other one as well. Hence keep on trying until you find what soothes you the most. 
  3. Resign to calm place: Sometimes sitting quietly with your own thoughts can benefit more than you know. As the article talked about not blurting out the emotions in the given moment, it is very important to calm down for we never know how much can our words hurt someone, keeping in mind that someone could be our own self.
  4. Analysing the events: Know if the situation or relationship is worth your time. Sometimes it is hard, yet it’s the best solution. We want to invest our time in the relations we want, it's important to look out for the mutual effort. In order to make a relationship work, the efforts should be from both the sides. 
  5. Look for distractions: A few things should be inspected and others are best taken off alone. Tune in to a book recording to take your brain off a long every day drive.
  6. Take a break: Counting till ten before reacting with anger can handle a lot of situations. Reacting in the spur of moment takes away our chance to respond to situation rationally. Therefore reacting can cause more harm than anyone can imagine.
  7. Focusing more on the root cause: Take a few steps to understand the reason behind the emotional breakdown. It's always the major underlying problems that are triggered by small events. For example: Sometimes crying over a delayed phone call can have deeper concerns of feeling insecure and not being loved by the significant other. 
  8. Change of routine: There might be a grave situation in your life or repeating designs that trouble you. In the event that you need various outcomes, do things another way. As we all know change is the only constant. Therefore by being flexible and adapting to the situation with new solutions can ease up the emotional turmoil. 

We all can benefit ourselves at maximum levels with these ways by thinking clearly, protecting our relations, avoiding regrets and enjoying more happiness.

So the next time, when the anger fits in, let’s actually go for the head!

About the Author

Sanjana Purdhani

I am Sanjana Purdhani, a student, currently persuing clinical psychology. I am in the 5th year of my integrated course. W

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