How Do I Name My Emotions? - Steps To Feeling Better

Last updated by Lauren Hart

Holding yourself back from saying what’s on your heart to the point that you turn crimson red. I’ve known this for years. So much so that I had a stomach ulcer at a very young age. Yes, yes, I kept my emotions in so much that they were eating away at me from the inside! I’ve since realized that I absolutely have to communicate, especially when things aren’t going well. Naming your emotions really makes you feel better, it’s even been scientifically proven. So let’s talk about it!

How Do I Name My Emotions? - Steps To Feeling Better

What does it mean to name emotions?

We always think of words that hurt, especially because of arguments 💢. Nevertheless, we quickly forget that confiding can soothe us, and in this case, words set us free. As the psychiatrist Christophe André explains, words have the power to help us, because they can carry not only information but also our emotions. That’s why I love evenings with my close friends, we confide in each other about our experiences 💬. We free ourselves of weight by doing this. It’s the same as what we do when we go to our psychologist, we transform our pain into words.

👉 If we feel better after talking, it’s because we’ve had an “emotional drain”, we’ve shared and it’s relieved us. Nevertheless, words go beyond connecting to others through speech.

Working on listening to yourself

Indeed, when we talk and put words to our emotions, we look inside ourselves for what we really feel. It’s an exercise that allows us to give a name to the “emotional blur”. Because yes, it’s not always easy to manage our emotions and understand them, which is why words can help us in this sense. It’s an in-depth analysis that words push us to do and that we might not do with our internal reflections.

Indeed, even though I always try to do some introspective work to understand myself better, I feel that the exercise of exchanging pushes me to dig a little deeper into the understanding of my emotions. That’s why I love talking to my friends so much 🤭! Especially as afterward, I feel free of weight, and that can be explained by science.

Working on our brains better

Feeling better through words, I know this idea may sound conceptual 🧐. But it has been verified by science through several studies. Here’s an example of one of the experiments conducted during these studies:

Researchers worked with several arachnophobias. To demonstrate the power of words, they were placed in the same room as a spider in a jar. In both cases, the individuals had to approach the jar, but one group of subjects had to say what they felt, and the other had to force themselves to think about something else. The result? A strong decrease in stress was observed in the subjects who verbalized their fear, unlike the other group who had to focus on other thoughts.

👉 Therefore, saying our negative emotions, such as fear, anger, or sadness, reduces the activity of the amygdala, which is the emotional center. By doing this, we instead call on the prefrontal cortex, which is the seat of emotional control. We, therefore, manage to better regulate our feelings and in the case of the experiment, we understand that talking about our fears allows us to face them better 💪!

Another solution for managing

However, it’s not always easy to verbalize our emotions. As much as I’d love to, I don’t see my friends every day. So, how do we express our emotions to feel better on a daily basis? The good news is that the words we say can also be written down 🖊️!

It was the work of the psychology researcher James Pennebaker that proved the beneficial effects of keeping a diary. Indeed, writing allows us to do the same analytical work as speaking. We go through the same processes and obtain the same results by confiding on paper, which is also called therapeutic writing.

Whatever form we choose, we now know that naming our emotions is an excellent tool for understanding ourselves. Even better, we manage to free ourselves from the emotional cacophony to feel better and happier. So whether it’s with our tongue or our hands, let’s learn to ver-ba-lize 🤗!

>>> Discover; How to overcome emotional blocks

Why can't I name what I'm feeling?

When we struggle to put words on the emotions we are experiencing, it's usually because we aren't used to doing so. When we are out of touch with our emotions, we tend to bury them and gloss over them, acting like they aren't really there. This is on the whole an unhealthy attitude towards dealing with our feelings and typically causes us more torment and upset along the line. Not being able to name what you feel isn't a huge deal, though, because after all, we can learn to become more open with ourselves and recognize what we are going through. Being honest with yourself is often an important first step and will lead you on the journey of connecting with your true self. Once you are able to compute your emotions, you'll have an easier time dealing with them and will have a more analytical look on situations that make you feel a certain way.

Editor’s note: Practice!

As you’ll have understood, expressing what we feel is crucial. Anything we don’t say remains printed on us and can cause serious damage. It’s certainly not always simple, and it’s easier for some people than others, depending on their personalities, but the good news is that it can be learned! You need to practice, try, start over and free yourself. If you find it difficult naming your emotions or if you feel bad right now, don’t hesitate to make an appointment with a psychologist.

🤗 Understanding yourself, accepting yourself, being happy... It’s here and now!


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Article presented by Lauren Hart

Writing is a beautiful means of expression that I cannot do without. It has allowed me to channel my hypersensitivity, plus I love writing about psychology and personal development. For me, self-understanding is the best way to move forward!

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Wengood's playlist

Wengood's favorite tunes 🎵

Wengood's playlist


  1. Only LoveBen Howard
  2. Invalid date
  3. Fix YouColdplay
  4. Beautiful DayU2
  5. Thinking out LoudEd Sheeran
  6. White FlagDido
  7. Lay Me DownSam Smith
  8. Nine Million BicyclesKatie Melua
  9. Put Your Records OnCorinne Bailey Rae
  10. Summertime SadnessLana Del Rey
  11. Imagine - Remastered 2010John Lennon
  12. Shake It OutFlorence + The Machine
  13. Space Oddity - Love You Til Tuesday versionDavid Bowie
  14. What A Wonderful WorldLouis Armstrong
  15. With Or Without YouU2
  16. HelloAdele
  17. Don't Stop Me NowQueen
  18. Skinny LoveBirdy
  19. WingsBirdy
  20. Californian SoilLondon Grammar

How to detect a narcissist?

"Be yourself; everyone else is already taken." 

- Oscar Wilde