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Emotions, Stress, and Heartbreak – with Eve Ekman

In this episode emotions researcher and meditation teacher Eve Ekman speaks with Michael W. Taft about embodied emotions, the difference between suppression and healthy expression, impermanence of sensation and moment by moment contact with emotion, emotion-laden cognitions, HH the Dalai Lama, punk rock and Gilman St., surfing, being nice to cats, the Vagus nerve and kundalini, the epidemic of stress and burnout, modern dystopia, struggling with cynicism, the embedded ethnography of heartbreak, and much, much more.

Eve Ekman PhD, MSW designs, delivers and evaluates trainings on the development of emotional awareness and the cultivation of deep seated contentment. Eve draws from educations and life experience in clinical social work, integrative medicine and contemplative practice. Eve is a second generation emotion researcher and has had meaningful collaborations with her father, renowned emotion researcher Dr. Paul Ekman. Their most recent project, The Atlas of Emotions, is an online visual tool to teach emotional awareness, a project commissioned and supported by the Dalai Lama. Eve is a founding teacher for Cultivating Emotional Balance, an evidenced based training with a rich contemplative science lineage of Western and Eastern approaches to emotional and genuine happiness.

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2 thoughts on “Emotions, Stress, and Heartbreak – with Eve Ekman”

  1. Great podcast, thanks. As “suppression” was mentioned around minute 32, I wanted to share the following thought; Suppression is consciously not dwelling on a given feeling. Repression is unconsciously denying a feeling. I frequently hear these two terms mixed up. To be fair, when meditators consciously ‘unselect’ feelings using their practice, that would be suppression (which was being talked about for parts of the discussion).

    Suppression is a necessary meditative skill, alongside allowing/letting-go/surrender. It seems that a complete picture includes the necessity of both of these skills, with neither one taking primacy. But of course individuals feel drawn to one side or the other, etc.

  2. Whoa, this episode was majorly helpful. The Atlas of Emotions illuminates for me something frustratingly obscure about my experience. I struggled in my personal life and in formal therapy to understand in my own way a useful concept of what an emotion is so that I could talk about them, identify them, know them with more clarity. That struggle was long and slow, and it didn’t have to be. I love what I’m discovering about Dr. Ekman’s work and other peripherals in this rabbit hole.

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