When these negative memories creep up, thinking about the context of the memories, rather than how you felt, is a relatively easy and an effective way to alleviate the negative effects of these memories, a new study has revealed.Read: Do sad songs say so much? Yes, they do
Thinking about the contextual elements of the memories significantly reduced their emotional impact.
"Looking away from the worst emotions and thinking about the context, like a friend who was there or what the weather was like, will rather effortlessly take your mind away from the unwanted emotions associated with (a negative) memory,” said professor Florin Dolcos from Beckman Institute at University of Illinois.Read: I have the worst memory: Courtney Cox
The researchers studied the behavioural and neural mechanisms of focusing away from emotion during recollection of personal emotional memories.
This strategy is a promising alternative to other emotion-regulation strategies, like suppression or reappraisal, suggested the study appeared in the journal Social Cognitive and Affective Neuroscience.