In her article Mood Swing: How feelings help and hurt , Kaja Perina [Psychology Today] reports on another study, at Washington University (WU) in St. Louis, in which “subjects viewed pleasant, neutral or anxiety-inducing video clips, then performed cognitive tasks while their brain activity was monitored by functional magnetic resonance imaging.”
One of the research study co-authors, Jeremy Gray, Ph.D., noted “It’s not simply that emotion ‘hijacks’ cognition but that emotions both enhance and impair higher cognition in very specific ways.”
Results indicated that anxiety enhances visual and spatial performance, and subjects who viewed a horror movie clip scored better on tests of face recognition than subjects who watched comedies. But watching comedies led to an improvement in verbal performance.
In his article Why Do We Have Moods? , Morty Lefkoe writes, “This mental state first became an issue in my occurring courses where the participants and I were trying to identify all the factors that seemed to influence how reality ‘occurred’ for us, in other words, what determined the meaning we gave events as we experienced them, moment by moment?
“We realized that probably the major source of our occurrings was our beliefs and conditionings. Other relevant sources included our physical condition and our ‘moods.’ But when we tried to state specifically what we meant by a mood and where our moods came from, we were stumped.”
But, he adds, “After a lot of thinking and a bunch of research, I came up with a few ideas, which I’d like to share with you… Moods seem to be like emotions in some respects and different in other respects. They both can be positive or negative. Moods tend to last longer than emotions.
“Usually emotions are set off by a specific stimulus (in the case of stimulus conditionings) or by the meaning we give specific events at the time.”
His Lefkoe Belief Method is acclaimed by many personal development leaders including Jack Canfield, as a program to overcome the most common limiting beliefs and conditionings.