The Mindful PhD: How It Works, III
A man riding a horse approaches a man standing by the side of the road. The bystander asks where the rider is going, and the rider responds, “‘I don’t know. Ask the horse’” (Tan, 2012, p. 104). Chade-Meng Tan tells this story to illustrate the notion of emotional regulation, affirming that the rider “can tame and guide the horse,” just as we can learn to “skillfully” work with our emotions. This skill helps us–in the wake of negative thoughts or experiences–become a) less emotionally and physiologically reactive, or at the mercy of immediate, habitual responses; and b) more resilient, able to bounce back. More….