Daniel Goleman: recent publications

How to Control Your Anger When ADHD Emotional Reactivity Kicks In

FREE WEBINAR ON MARCH 1Sign up to attend “When ADHD Triggers Emotional Outbursts: Scripts for Your Flashpoints (Part Two)” with Sharon Saline, Psy.D.It starts with a trigger. In an instant, a volcano of anger and negative emotion erupts.

Before you can process what’s happening, you say or do things that you will surely regret later. But you can’t stop yourself.

If we’re being honest, sometimes it feels good to let it all out.Living with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) means living with a stress-producing condition that begets emotional reactivity. Though the ADHD brain is wired to feel emotions like anger, frustration, and hurt quite intensely, emotional reactivity is ultimately a response pattern — one that you can shift with the right tools and frame of mind.Emotional dysregulation is part and parcel of ADHD.

Taken together, the following features explain why emotional eruptions occur so acutely and so often in ADHD.The amygdala is the emotional part of the brain that drives the fight-flight-freeze response. Amygdala hijack, a term coined by Daniel Goleman, Ph.D., occurs when the brain overreacts to a threat, real or perceived, and effectively takes over the prefrontal cortex — the thinking part of the brain.ADHD brains appear more likely to experience amygdala hijack for a variety of reasons.

For one, amygdala abnormalities are commonly seen in ADHD brains.12 The ADHD brain also struggles to turn off emotional processing — a problem when stress, either caused by systemic or individual forces, is persistently present. A constant flooding of stress and emotions essentially causes individuals to lose access to the rational part of themselves.[Get This Free Download: Emotional Regulation & Anger Management

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Daniel Goleman