Emotional Intelligence

How Emotional Technology Can Enhance Your Life in the Future

How Emotional #Technology Can Enhance Your Life in the #Future

Our pace of technological advancement is changing our lives exponentially. It's exciting to think about what is around the corner. We are set to travel vast distances in minutes. Space tourism is becoming a thing. Some scientists believe we may live past 1000 years old. Artificial intelligence is rapidly improving to spot patterns in overwhelming amounts of data. Yet, how technology can enhance our interior and empathic lives is often overlooked. According to Alain de Botton, future emotional technologies will profoundly enhance our lives. 

In this School of Life video, Alain explains three particular technologies he believes will be among the most impactful:

I: The Mood Reader
"One of the major sources of conflict and grief between people, especially in relationships, stems from how bad we are at explaining the contents of our minds to other people... When we are on the receiving end of inaccurately communicated feelings, we tend to make bad guesses about what might be going on in the other person. We get overly alarmed. We come up with jumpy, ungenerous stories... The Mood Reader will be able to give people close to us (whom we elect) beautifully expressed executive summaries of what we’re really feeling at a given point; laid out in ways that are accurate generous and imaginative - like something a great novelist would come up with. Currently, too often, a person in a couple will say in despair, after a long sulk or argument, 'how did you expect me to be a mind reader?' Technology will spare us the cumulative years of sulks and arguments by allowing us to be, for a time, just that."

How Emotional #Technology Can Enhance Your #Life in the #Future

II: The Spouse Finder
"The Spouse Finder of 2050 will be an expert finding you a match. Partly because everyone on the planet will be registered with it, but just as importantly, because it will have such an acute understanding of our deepest needs and emotional vulnerabilities... The spouse finder will have a picture of our long-term development in its memory... The spouse finder will know us and others so well it'll have the authority to convince us when we do hit tricky patches with a partner it's found us, but for all its faults our relationship really is the best available for us. It'll give us the confidence to believe that the trickiness of our couple emerges not so much from the other person as from the inherent difficulty of being with anyone."

How Emotional #Technology Can Enhance Your #Life in the #Future

III: Socrates
"Named after the world's greatest early philosopher, Socrates, who famously said that the first philosophical priority is to know yourself. Socrates will be a piece of wearable emotional technology that will make up for our failures of self-knowledge in real time. We imagine it as a kind of wearable life coach, with the total understanding of our mental health, who we are, and what we need to thrive emotionally. At key moments, Socrates will be on hand to temper our excesses and correct our emotional blind spots. It will know when we're getting to an angry outburst and counselors wisely before it's too late. It will sense mounting panic and be on hand immediately with the most soothing insights humanity has ever had. It will ween us away from unhelpful desires and compulsions towards more fruitful and enriching pursuits. It will know when we need an extra challenge. It will ensure that we can at all times be the best version of ourselves."

How Emotional #Technology Can Enhance Your #Life in the #Future

Alain concludes: 
"The promise of technology has always been that it will make life more convenient and less painful, but to date we haven't managed to focus on technological efforts on the biggest sources of discontent, which aren’t to do with the size of our phones or the speed of our planes, but with our emotional lives and the turmoil caused in them by our self-ignorance, cognitive frailty and in our blindness. That is the astonishing promise of the upcoming age of emotional technology."

The above post was lovingly crafted by Josiah Hultgren. Josiah Hultgren is Founder/CEO of MindFullyAlive, a Senior Lecturer at California Lutheran University, a NeuroCoach, and a practical neuroscience expert. He produces and curates mindfulness content designed to improve structure and functioning of the brain. His mission is to help create a more vibrant world and apply neuroscience in ways that help people reach their highest potential.

Want More Happiness? Just Stay Alive and Lower Your Expectations

Want More #Happiness? Just Stay #Alive and Lower Your #Expectations

The written content of the post was authored by best-selling author and neuroscience expert, Mark Robert Waldman. It is posted with his permission.

For decades researchers have come up with conflicting evidence on the connecting between age and happiness. In 2013, Scientific American reported on a comprehensive study showing that, on average, most people become happier as they age. Peak happiness tended to be around the age of 60-70.

So how do you explain the "crotchety old man" stereotype? By the degree of suffering you experienced in childhood. For example, the Great Depression caused worldwide unhappiness, and although those children would continue to grow happier with age, happy children had a head start.

But wait! A new study published in the journal Social Psychological and Personality Science shows a pattern reversal in the last 5 years.  Instead of the moodiness of youth subsiding, older adults are feeling less satisfied than people in their 30s. The researchers suggest an intriguing reason:  high expectations! 

This shows we would do best to savor past and current accomplishments. Practice acceptance and gratitude while gently working to improve oneself. Engage in mindfulness practices proven to increase self-esteem and well-being. 

If you do, it's very likely you'll grow happier and happier over the passage of time.


Don't abandon your dreams. Focus on future goals that bring deep meaning and purpose as you slowly move to them. Spend a few minutes realizing all the gifts you've received in every year of your life.  Happiness is there, hiding in the neurons of your brain.

Take a moment, right now, and mindfully reflect on all the tiny accomplishments you’ve had this past week.  Notice how it makes you feel to savor these past moments of success. Now reflect on your accomplishments this past month. Is your sense of happiness increasing?  If you write down all of the pleasurable accomplishments in your life, you might just have a transformative and enlightening experience!

Fireflies time-lapse by  Vincent Brady

Fireflies time-lapse by Vincent Brady


Age Brings Happiness: Exactly how much joy, however, depends on when you were born. 
Karen Simring. Scientific American Mind, May 1, 2013.

More Happiness for Young People and Less for Mature Adults: Time Period Differences in Subjective Well-Being in the United States, 1972–2014.
Jean M. Twenge, Ryne A. Sherman, Sonja Lyubomirsky. Social Psychological and Personality Science, 1-11-16.

Check out Mark Waldman's free 6 Days to Enlightenment email series for information on how you can access enlightened states often and easily.

5-Step Formula For Interrupting Anxiety and Negativity

5-Step Formula For Interrupting #Anxiety and #Negativity

The written content of the post was authored by best-selling author and neuroscience expert, Mark Robert Waldman. It is posted with his permission.

These are some of the best evidence-based strategies for reducing neural stress:

1. Suppress them. Contrary to what psychologists used to say, the research on thought suppression is robust. So when you find yourself ruminating on a worry, fear, or doubt, “just say no.” Tell that inner voice to shut up!

2. If suppression doesn’t work, use cognitive reframing: are you exaggerating? Is your worry real? Remember: worrying about a problem doesn’t help you solve it, but looking for solutions, and remaining positive, stimulates the “success” circuits in your frontal lobe.

3. If logic and reason fails, practice mindfulness: sit back and observe – without judgment – all the thoughts and feelings that flow in and out of consciousness. Mindfulness teaches your mind and your brain to disconnect from the emotional impact of negativity, and it stimulates both the “success” and “self-love” circuits in your brain. When you mindfully watch your thoughts, sudden bursts of insight often occur.

4. Still can’t free yourself of those negative thoughts? Accept them! A meta-analytic review study of mindfulness and acceptance-based therapies showed that the “oh well” approach is one of the most effective ways for dealing with most emotional problems.

5. After acceptance, begin to practice lovingkindness and forgiveness meditations, coupled with keeping a gratitude journal. We all need to send love to ourselves on a daily basis, consciously reflecting on the small accomplishments we achieve everyday and the people in our lives who care for us.

5-Step Formula For Interrupting #Anxiety and #Negativity

Still feeling negative?

Practice the NeuroWisdom and NeuroCoaching strategies of staying deeply relaxed and mindfully attentive as you yawn, stretch, and ground yourself in a core value. Try self-nurturing, doing any physically pleasurable activity. Recall a pleasant memory and immerse yourself in memories of past accomplishments. Each of these techniques interrupts the neural circuits involved in negative feelings, emotions, and thoughts.

Check out Mark Waldman's free 6 Days to Enlightenment email series for information on how you can access enlightened states often and easily.