The Emotion Revolution

On Saturday, October 24th, the Yale Center for Emotional Intelligence and Born This Way Foundation – created by Lady Gaga and her mother, Cynthia Germanotta, – hosted the Emotion Revolution Summit to build awareness of the critical role emotions play in young people’s learning, decision-making, academic achievement, and overall wellness. The Summit featured  panel discussions, workshops, and remarks by advocates, educators, nearly 200 visiting Youth from around the country, and Lady Gaga herself.

The event provided a platform for youth participants to share their ideas for creating improved learning environments through workshops and panel discussions.  Throughout the day, Lady Gaga encouraged the youth attendants to take their own mental and emotional health seriously and to proactively seek the tools they need to foster wellbeing. She called on participants to join the conversation around why emotions matter through the #IAmNotJust hashtag on Social Media.

“We want to explode the conversation around youth mental health so that it’s not seen as a fringe issue anymore,” said Lady Gaga. “Today is a lot bigger than just one event or some social media campaign. It’s the beginning of making the emotional – as well as physical – wellbeing of young people a national issue.”

Dr. Marc Brackett, Director of the Yale Center for Emotional Intelligence, unveiled the results of an unprecedented online survey of 22,000 high school-age youth. The survey explored how young people currently feel and how they want to feel in school, and the possible reasons for these emotions. Dr. Brackett’s presentation slides are available for download. Here are some of the highlights of the research:

  • When asked how they currently feel in school, out of all the words respondents listed, approximately 75% were negative.
  • The most common words these students used to describe their current emotions at school are “Tired” (39%), “Stressed” (29%), and “Bored” (26%).
  • When asked how they WANT to feel in school the top three emotions that students want to experience more of are “Happy,” Energized,” and “Excited”
  • Students who reported that their peers had been mean and cruel to them also reported feeling greater levels of loneliness, fear, and hopelessness.
  • Students who believed what they were learning was relevant and meaningful to their lives – and reported they had teachers who deliver engaging lessons – experienced more positive emotions in school like interest, respect, and happiness.

Facebook also had a major presence at the event. They launched inspirED—a resource center for high school students and educators born out of a partnership between Facebook and the Yale Center for Emotional Intelligence. Designed by educators, teens, and experts in social and emotional learning (SEL), inspirED is a tool to help high school students and educators work together to create the best possible learning communities.

Overall, the #EmotionRevolution generated more than 618 Million Social Media Impressions worldwide, with the #IAmNotJust hashtag trending globally.If you were unable to attend or view the LiveStream, you can re-live the #EmotionRevolution by watching both the Opening and Closing sessions online.

The Emotion Revolution was made possible by the generous support of Facebook, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, Microsoft, Mattel, Life is Good, HopeLab, WWE, U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation, Flawless Foundation, and the Faas Foundation.

To learn more about the #EmotionRevolution, check out these links:














“Our emotions are put in this compartment with a massive stigma around it that it is just not cool to feel. We have to make it cool to feel again.”

—Lady Gaga

The Emotion Revolution Presentation Slides