It may feel to you like your emotions are hard-wired and triggered and just happen to you, but they don’t…

Emotions are guesses in the moment

-Dr. Lisa Feldman Barrett

Dr. Barrett presenting her TED talk: You aren’t at the mercy of your emotions– your brain creates them

This TED talk by Dr. Barrett refutes so much that we think we know about emotions and how we experience them. Her research, and her analysis of previous research, tell us that our emotions are our brains’ attempts at figuring out what might be going on. What we read on someone else’s face is a guess that we make about them. Our experience of emotions is also a guess at why we’re noticing certain physical sensations. This goes against commonly held beliefs that our emotions are uncontrollable and set in stone to trigger against our will. Dr. Barrett goes on to say, “Emotions are not built into your brain at birth; they are just built”


Hear her talk here: