When we are learning to recognize and identify our feelings — a.k.a. emotional awareness — we begin by thinking about the general bucket it goes into. Is this an emotion I am enjoying feeling or would I rather it went away? That gives us a clue as to the broad category it falls into (Joy, Peace, Confidence or Fear, Anger, Sadness). From there we can choose a word that best fits the intensity of the emotion.
Easier said than done, you say? You’re right. But don’t give up yet.
There are so many words to describe our feelings that it can be overwhelming — especially for those of us who are just beginning to learn how to recognize and identify our emotions.
–Melissa Haas, Emotions 101