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"Mastering Your Emotions: Unveiling the 90-Second Rule and Unleashing the Art of Letting Go!"

Embarking on the journey of letting go can be quite a formidable task, but the potential rewards are substantial.



In my interactions with clients, I frequently encounter individuals grappling with the challenge of articulating their thoughts verbally.


Despite possessing a wealth of ideas, their words often elude them. By opting for silence, they inadvertently hold onto a multitude of emotions, forming an unseen reservoir of turmoil that compounds their trauma. This reservoir can gradually expand over time, giving rise to sentiments of resentment and emptiness, and even contributing to mental health conditions like anxiety and depression. It's the seemingly inconspicuous aspects of life left unattended that can accrue, culminating in physical and mental strain.


Grasping the intricacies of neuroscience becomes a potent tool to increase our self awareness. Dr. Jill Bolte Taylor, the author of "Whole Brain Living," sheds light on the temporal nature of emotions, asserting that they typically endure for a mere 90 seconds. Within this fleeting period, our thoughts, emotions, and psychological responses intertwine. For instance, when anger surfaces, the psychological response releases norepinephrine into the bloodstream—a process that precisely takes 90 seconds to complete. Bolte Taylor contends that understanding the mechanics of the brain empowers us to become observers of our thoughts, shielding us from getting entangled in repetitive cycles of thought, emotion, and physiological response.


Assuming the role of an observer confers intellectual control, paving the way for more informed decision-making. However, there are instances when one may feel powerless, unable to articulate their thoughts. The relentless influx of emotions and psychological responses inundates the system with norepinephrine, making it challenging to just let it go. Without intellectual control, negative thinking tightens its grip.


Equipping ourselves with tools can re-establish a sense of control and facilitate the release of pent-up emotions.


Here are a few strategies:


Recall the 90-second emotion rule: Become attuned to your thoughts, identifying situations that trigger specific emotions and ride out those 90 seconds.


Interrupt the cycle with mindful breaths: Breathe in through the nose for three counts, hold your breath for two counts and then exhale through the nose for six counts. Repeat three times.


Evaluate your thoughts: Do you feel calmer has this process been successful? Celebrate this moment and give yourself credit for retaining intellectual control. Well-done you did it! If the negative thinking persists, revisit the mindful breathing exercise.


These techniques serve as interventions, disrupting negative thought patterns to subside the release of stressful neurotransmitters.



In situations where a response is necessary but articulation proves challenging kit is important to let it go. A valuable technique involves letter writing:


Follow this process:



  • Take three intentional breaths.

  • Express your thoughts in a detailed letter.

  • Repeat three intentional breaths.

  • Visualize letting go of the situation, seeing the emotion exit your body.

  • Discard the letter, ensuring a safe disposal.

  • Repeat three intentional breaths.

By actively visualising the process of letting go, you engage in a dynamic and empowering technique that not only rejuvenates but also restores a sense of calmness, steering clear of prolonged rumination and negative thinking.


Khalie Bache


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