using the arrow buttons.
by clicking on the page.
the page around when zoomed in by dragging it.
the zoom using the slider when zoomed-in.
by clicking on the zoomed-in page.
by entering text in the search field, and select "This Issue" or "All Issues"
by clicking on thumbnails to select pages, and then press the print button.
displays sections with thumbnails and descriptions.
displays a slider of thumbnails. Click on a page to jump.
allows you to browse the full archive.
about your subscription?
Lions Roar : July 2016
But it doesn’t work that way. As the psychologist Jeffrey Lohr recently concluded after a meta-analysis of a wide variety of clinical studies, “Expressing anger does not reduce aggressive tendencies and likely makes it worse.” In other words, when I’m venting I’m trying to externalize—to push outside of myself and onto someone else—feelings that are meant to be felt in my body. Over the last decade of mentoring, not to mention my years in Buddhist therapy, I’ve learned that emotions are alleviated in only a couple of ways: By being felt. Emotions seek our attention by creating phys- ical sensations—the tight abdomen or chest, the pounding heartbeat, the contraction of throat muscles, facial expressions, shaking limbs, etc.—for us to feel. Emotions speak via the body, while thoughts speak in words. Emotions are impulses from the unconscious, telling us that an event that affects our survival, or reminds us of an earlier threat or interpersonal disappointment, has occurred. These emotions/impulses also let us know that our subconscious minds have decided that something important has happened, and that we should pay attention to it. And by being communicated. Human beings are social beings. Knowing that others understand what we’re experiencing makes us feel less vulnerable. It’s possible to achieve some relief by expressing strong emotions in art, music, dance, writing, and so on, but noth- ing replaces direct communication: You’re feeling really hurt, wounded, lonely, sad, depressed. I get it. I’m here. When some- one mirrors our emotional state back to us—through words, a knowing smile, or other nonverbal indication—we feel relief. Connection soothes our unconscious survival regions, telling us You’re okay, you’re safe, others care about you. (For more on this, see psychologist Matthew Lieberman’s wonderful book, Social.) For many years I relied on alcohol to freeze or get rid of my anger and other feelings. Drinking inhibits awareness of the emotional body, where the feelings of anger reside. Others seek out food, shopping, pornography, or other behaviors to distract themselves from the feeling of anger in the body. Eventually, though, the unacknowledged emotions build and force their way to the surface, and we vent them with even greater force. Have you ever met romantic partners who say they never argue, but then suddenly split apart? When we fail to acknowledge our disappointments and continually bury conflict, eventually huge battles and breakups ensue over minu- tia like whose turn it was to purchase toilet paper or clean the dishes. Unexpressed and unfelt emotions don’t go away; they erupt or eat away at us. PHOTOBYANDYMCKAY/MILLENNIUMIMAGES,UK LION’S ROAR | JULY 2016 54