Emotional Mind, Rational Mind and Wise Mind

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What is an Emotional Mind?

An emotional mindset is a state of mind in which emotions and feelings are more dominant than logical thought and reasoning. It is a “hot side” of the mind. People with an emotional mindset tend to be highly reactive to their emotions, and they often make decisions based on their feelings rather than considering the practical aspects of a situation. They may be highly sensitive and easily influenced by their emotions, which can lead to impulsive behavior and poor decision-making. The emotional mind is responsible for aspects such as poetry, music, art, fashion, etc.; it is the passionate side of the mind.

Although an emotional mindset is not necessarily a bad thing, it is often viewed negatively and carries social disadvantages. Our emotional reason is responsible for feelings such as love, fear, anger, etc. If thought out with the rational mind rather than the emotional mind, the outcome or the decision made would differ in some situations.

An example of an emotional mindset is when a person makes a decision solely based on their emotions and feelings rather than a logical analysis of the situation. For instance, if a person buys an expensive item because they feel happy and excited, even though they know they cannot afford it, they are operating from an emotional mindset. In this case, their emotions are the driving force behind their decision, rather than practical considerations such as their budget or financial responsibilities. Another example could be someone quitting their job impulsively because they feel undervalued or unappreciated, without considering the consequences of unemployment or finding a new job.

What is a Rational Mind?

A rational mind, also known as the reasonable mind, guides us into thinking over a situation clearly without feelings getting in the way. Take the pervasive example of people in love. A person in love would not understand how you can see their partner in the wrong, even though the partner would be wrong at times. Because they are using their emotional mind while you are using your rational mind. In our world, being of sound mind with the ability to make reasonable decisions is such a valued characteristic. It is admirable and respectable to be able to analyze situations and come up with a pros-and-cons list.

The rational mind is great to use when trying to figure out how to solve a crisis because it is highly based on logic, and it is a “cool” side which is quite contrary to the emotional mind. For instance, if a person is considering buying a new car, they may research different models, compare prices, evaluate their budget, and weigh the pros and cons of each option before making a decision. They might also talk to experts or ask trusted sources for advice to make sure they are making an informed decision. In this case, the person uses their rational mind to evaluate the decision based on facts and practical considerations rather than being swayed by emotions or impulsive desires affect their decision.

Although using your rational mind can lead to accurate and correct decisions, it may not always lead to making wise choices. Therefore, it’s important to know how to tap into your wise mind.

What is a Wise Mind?

It gets more interesting when one can use both their rational and emotional minds in sync. In short, the wise mind is where the emotional and rational minds overlap. In dialectical behavior therapy (DBT), “wise mind” is a mental state in which a person integrates their rational and emotional minds to make decisions based on logic, intuition, and their own values. A wise mind is considered a balance between the two states of mind, where a person can use their logical reasoning and emotional responses to make decisions and solve problems effectively.

Emotional Mind Vs Rational Mind
The Three Minds

An example of a wise mind is when people combine their emotional and rational minds to make decisions grounded in logic and aligned with their values, beliefs, and intuition. For instance, if a person is considering a job offer, they may use their rational mind to evaluate the salary, benefits, and job requirements, but they may also tap into their emotional mind to consider how the job aligns with their passions, career goals, and personal values. They may also listen to their intuition or gut feelings to make the right decision. In this case, the person is using their wise mind to make a logical and authentic decision to their personal values and beliefs.

Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT)

Sometimes, finding the balance between the emotional mind and the rational mind can be a hassle. Some people are more inclined toward the emotional mind, while others use their sound mind more. The emotional mind and analytical mind are quite opposite. Dialectical behavior therapy (DBT) is a form of psychotherapy that mainly helps individuals who struggle with their passionate minds. It helps individuals understand their emotions more and learn ways to regulate them. Sometimes, you might not know when to express your feelings or in what manner to do so. With dialectical behavior therapy (DBT), you have significant control over your emotions and mood swings. An assumption in DBT is that everyone can access their wise mind and find the middle ground between the reasonable mind and the emotional mind.