In order to succeed, individuals must be able to recognize their emotions and regulate how they are displayed to others. This idea may sound simple in theory, but it is more challenging in practice. A large part of successful emotional recognition and regulation is the identification of emotions, something with which even seasoned adults struggle. Let's apply this theory to our example and assume that the evaluation process at work has transpired, and you were passed over for promotion. Also, imagine that a coworker you dislike was elevated to a similar position despite having subpar leadership skills. You naturally feel angry, jealous, and upset. After all, a new job title would make a big difference in your life. When you combine a few rules, you have a system. And a system helps you to take the thinking part out of the equation. The only thinking you need to do is when your system doesn't give you the results you want. If my system would make me feel bad or gain weight, I would rethink it. And even if it works, a system is never perfect. That's why I regularly think about what I can change or how I can improve my systems. I'd rather eat rice and beans so I can do the things that I love instead of having a job that makes me miserable, but pays well. At the end of the day, this is your life and the only way you can live with yourself is to follow your strongest desires. Just make sure you think straight so you eventually act on those thoughts. Allow yourself to renew your intention with every slipup and you'll stay the course. Shame yourself and you'll be back trying to look perfect again. Inextricably tied up with slipping, going back on autopilot, and desperately wanting to hide even after you recognize the importance of growing comfortable with vulnerability are triggers. We all have emotional or mental triggers, many of which are known to us.

Those are conscious. Some of them are pleasant. You smell pipe smoke and remember your beloved granddad. You get sentimental as you take out holiday decorations, associating different ones with various vacations or family rituals. But many conscious triggers definitely aren't pleasant. The scratchiness of a beard on your face brings back memories of your sexual abuser. Hearing a semi traveling in the next lane causes anxiety because of a previous car wreck. At their worst, triggers themselves can cause flashbacks, which in turn cause you to feel as if you're experiencing the trauma of the past all over again. A car backfiring becomes gunfire and you hit the floor. You see the same kind of dog that viciously attacked you years ago and you run away, terrified. If you had high chance or external scores for health, you might want to consider our country's top killers: heart disease, cancer, diabetes, homicide, suicide, and automobile accidents. What are the lifestyle choices that affect those outcomes? The major determinants of heart disease are poor diet, lack of exercise, high stress, and smoking. Stress, smoking, and diet issues have also been implicated in cancer prevention research. Although there are major implications for genetics in diabetes, the biggest issues there are, again, diet, exercise, and stress. Stress is even more clearly linked to homicide and suicide. And when it comes to automobile accidents, the major factors are high speed, alcohol intake, carelessness, and failing to use seat belts. Looking back over all these factors, ask yourself: Who controls these things? Are you the one in charge of these choices or are you letting something or someone else make them for you? Bottom line: Most major health issues can be influenced by what you do or don't do.

Like it or not, a lot of the cause and effect is in your hands. The health professionals who treat you may have greater knowledge about your disease, but you have greater knowledge about you. Over the long haul, you have more power over your body and mind than anyone else. And you have more of the responsibility. A higher internal score is therefore often productive. In our fast-paced, demanding days we are now seeking relief, equanimity and liberation. We no longer want to feel fatigued, disillusioned, overworked and overwhelmed, distanced from the simple needs and pleasures that actually make us happy as human beings. We want to feel energised, inspired, soothed and nourished; to carry ourselves with a sense of our divinity, integrity and courage. We want to sparkle and we deserve to realise that, despite our layers of well-worn patterns, limiting beliefs and ideas, we were born to do so. Rather than spending our days feeling self-conscious, anxious and doubtful, we yearn to know and be our free, unbridled and true selves. We long to live daily lives enchanted by delicious spontaneity and profound delight. After all, we are not here to toil and suffer, we are here to know, touch and nurture heaven on earth. We can begin to see and live magically from this day forward. We can stop searching and start finding. Finding our bliss, balance and inner peace; finding our happy. You have a clear view of the circumstances. Now, take a step back. Think about why you would have these emotions. Perhaps you are disappointed because you had self-expectations that you were unable to meet. Maybe you are jealous because you were rejected in favor of someone else.

Or possibly you are frustrated because you did not attain a goal you anticipated reaching. There is always a reason for our emotions, whether rational or irrational. Being self-reflective can help you ascertain what they are. Why revisit negative emotions? The purpose of reflection is to gain insight into how emotional states impact your judgment and behavior. In this instance, are your anger and jealousy rational or irrational? Are these feelings constructive or destructive? If you are like most people, then the answer is probably no. An important part of self-regulation and control is identifying your emotions, understanding what is triggering them, and managing them appropriately. I hardly look back on life. I never daydream of the past. I don't look at old photos all day long. I don't even think about taking pictures because I'm too involved in the present. Sometimes, I feel like most people are stuck in the past. They live their life in the past tense. Instead of enjoying a moment, they grab their phone and take a picture of it. Instead of living life through a lens, I prefer to be present at all times. Now, I must be honest that I fail to be 100% present. However, I intend to live now. And I know I'm successful because I never have the urge to relive the past.

I'm too busy enjoying now. That doesn't mean I never stop to take a family picture. I just don't go around snapping millions of pictures that I will never look at again. Think about it, when do you have the time to take a look at all your memories? How many pictures and videos do you have? How many old documents, old diplomas, memorabilia, and other physical things do you have stored that remind you of the past? There are triggers that we don't know about consciously. Remember Mallory? She'd been neglected most of the time as a child. When she did get attention, it was either highly critical or an onslaught of over-the-top rushes of endearment. It had been confusing to her and she'd found safety in isolation. She'd not experienced warm, consistent love from a parent. Much later in her life, when her own children wanted her to be close with them, she felt weirdly trapped and fought old feelings of needing to get away. She was getting triggered. Her timeline helped her see this trigger and the connection between present and past. Dial back for a minute to your earlier work with connecting with emotions. You designed a timeline. You wrote out the messages you'd received from each event. You connected with the emotion of that message and then began the work of identifying any patterns between your behavior now and the past events on your timeline. Is your decision really all that difficult?