Atlas of the Heart

up:: Books





  • [status:: read]
  • [rating:: 5]
  • [added:: 2023-01-15]
  • [started:: 2023-02-08]
  • [read:: 2023-03-01]


The aim of the book is to increase emotional literacy.


Envy happens when we want something that someone else has.


Jealousy happens when we are afraid of losing a relationship or valued part of a relationship that we already have.


Resentment is a part of envy.

If I resent someone for not working hard, this is related to envy. I wish I could be as relaxed as that person.


Disappointment is unmet expectations. The more significant the expectations, the more significant the disappointment.

Beware of “stealth expectations”. Often I have a movie in my head of how I want things to go. I rarely express this. When things don’t go that way, I feel frustrated. This puts strain on relationships.


Most people believe basic human right should not be violated. Successful dehumanising depicts a group as “less than human”, creating moral exclusion. The targeted group falls out of scope of who is protected by our moral code.


This book is like an encyclopedia of emotions. In her research, Brown found that when labelling emotions, most people reply to be either “glad, sad or mad”. Our limited vocabulary stops us from accurately understanding our complex emotions or conveying them to others. This book’s aim is to increase “emotional literacy”.

With 87 emotions in 13 categories, there is a vast variety of emotions presented. Still, the book never felt dull. Each emotion is concise, yet informative. The tone did a good job in being conversational, without feeling forced. There was big variety in Brown sharing stories from her life, as well as her own and research from others.

I had a lot of lightbulb moments reading through this book. In each emotion there is a ton to unpack and to learn. This book has been a bit left-field for me to read but it was so good to get a deeper understanding of what I am feeling, how to label it and how to respond.

There was also some good overlap with other books. On the importance of being your own person in community, Emotionally Healthy Spirituality emphasises the same importance, calling it a ‘community of solitudes’ (in a good way). Her writing on Paradox echoed Extreme Ownership’s principle of the Dichotomy of Leadership.

There is a ton of good stuff in this book. I could have written down every definition of every emotion. 5 stars from me!


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