The key to having a choice about your emotional behavior is to be aware of the fact that you are becoming emotional. With a calm mind, you are more likely to be able to act by rational choice and appropriately to the situation. When you are in a grip of an emotion, that’s going to bias your perceptions of what is occurring to what fits that emotion. Themes that don’t fit in, you are not going to recognize. So, a calm mind is an essential precondition for being able to respond to the reality, not the unrealities that you are preoccupied with.
Read the full interview with Paul Ekman on Psychology Today.