The window of tolerance concept helps us understand why there are so many individual differences in how we experience feelings.
I hope you’ve had a wonderful week, and I’m glad that you are back as we continue this conversation about emotional tolerance, and explore the differences in how we experience our feelings.
The window of tolerance concept helps us understand why there are so many individual differences in how we experience feelings. We may experience each of the eight feelings at differing levels of intensity, which is the wide-ranging degree to which we are stimulated by feelings and how much or how little we experience a feeling once we are aware of it.
Many of us are comfortable dealing with some of the unpleasant feelings, but not all of them.
For example, let’s say you’re comfortable enough with sadness, anger, and embarrassment that you don’t explode or shut down. Yet, any measure of disappointment leads to a feeling that you are unraveling or falling apart. Here disappointment feels too intense and too hard to tolerate as comfortably as you tolerate other unpleasant emotions.
The same holds true of sensitivity – which is the smallest amount of stimulation needed to kick our “appraisal systems” into gear. Appraisal is an aspect of brain function that alerts you to pay immediate and close attention to what’s happening in the moment.
You’ll notice a pattern here: some people respond almost instantaneously becoming reactive or explosive and needing little stimulation or provocation; others, however, may seem like they are impervious to things around them and seem to show little or no emotion to events or situations occurring in their lives.
Next week, I’ll talk about ‘Why Naming or Labeling Feelings is Important’.
This weeks questions:
What differences have you noticed between how you experience each of the eight unpleasant feelings?
Which ones do you experience with greater intensity and/or sensitivity?
For which feelings do you seem to have the greatest window of tolerance?
What do you notice about how people in your life respond to feelings?
I’d love for you to respond on my facebook group if you feel comfortable!!
Join my group on Facebook LOVE MY LIFE and let me know. I’ll post the question and jump on myself to chat and answer questions.
To A Life You Love,
Dr. Joan Rosenberg