Emotions are strong feelings that trigger changes in the psychological and physical human aspects that influence behavior and

Emotions are strong feelings that trigger changes in the psychological and physical human aspects that influence behavior and

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Emotions

Emotions are strong feelings that trigger changes in the psychological and physical human aspects that influence behavior and thoughts. Emotions are linked to the actions, thoughts and feelings of an individual, which, in turn, determine the personality, motivation, and mood. Emotions also affect various aspects of an individual and act as indicators of what goes on in an individual’s life. The neurological, psychological and cognitive theories attempt to explain the source of emotions.

Physiological theories propose that bodily reactions trigger emotions, cognitive theories propose that thoughts and mental activities cause emotions and the neurological theories suggest that the brain activities cause emotions. Some people believe that the soul rather than the brain controls emotions. By contrast, emotions control the holistic individual in behavior, thoughts, and actions. It is essential to express the emotions rather than bury them because they could be unhealthy and cause illnesses such as cancer. Emotions trigger a part of the brain to release chemicals, and the chemicals released due to positive emotions are different from those of negative emotions (Kurus Web).

The James-Lange Theory of Emotion supports the idea that emotions are a result of a psychological reaction to a situation. External stimuli trigger psychological reactions and the resultant emotions will be determined by an interpretation of the events. For example, the fight or flight experience when one is in danger, is an example of this theory where one decides to flee from danger or stay on and face the problem. The fight or flight mechanism is associated with the hypothalamus in the brain, which stimulates the release of chemicals such as cortisol, adrenaline, and noradrenaline that prepare for the looming danger. Consequently, the chemical trigger responses such as pupil dilation, sweating, increased respiration rate and quickened impulses among other feelings. These prepare the body to fight or flee bypassing the rational decision of the mind. Schachter-Singer Theory suggests that psychological arousals occur first and the individual seeks an explanation to the event from the environment. The resultant emotion depends on the sought explanation from the environment. For example, when one is in a crowd, the resultant emotions are determined by the actions of the mob. A music concert will trigger happiness and excitement while an angry mob will trigger anger and rowdiness.

The brain is the central point where emotions are controlled because the hypothalamus, a region that releases the chemicals linked to emotions, is located in the brain. The sensory organs of the body respond to stimuli from the environment and send the messages to the brain via the nerves. The messages are then interpreted by the brain, triggering certain chemicals to be released by the hypothalamus. Positive messages cause the release of chemicals that trigger emotions such as excitement, happiness, love, acceptance and contentedness. By contrast, negative messages cause the release of chemicals that trigger negative emotions such as sadness, stress, anger, anxiety, fear, and depression among others. The triggered emotions, in turn, determine the mood, motivation and personality of an individual. For example, sadness will determine the mood while acceptance and appreciation will cause motivation (Kurus Web).

From the above biological explanation, the brain seems to be in more control of emotions than the soul. The soul is a spiritual or immortal part of human beings, and it triggers some emotions in the subconscious mind. The soul may trigger emotions related to past events such as remorse or death when one remembers the event, causing sadness or sorrow. However, the brain and not the soul trigger a majority of the emotions expressed by an individual.

Work Cited

Kurus, Mary. Emotions – How To Understand, Identify Release Your Emotions. M.K. Projects International, 2002. Web. 21 April 2014.