The expression of Emotions

The expression of Emotions....

The ability to express one's feelings is a fundamental social skill. To refer to the social consensus in which it is appropriate to express one's feelings, a domain in which there is enormous cross-cultural variability.


There are several fundamental types of role play. One consists of minimizing emotions, another consists of exaggerating what one feels by magnifying emotional expression. A third consists of substituting one feeling for another. The knowledge of these strategies and of the moment in which they can manifest themselves is an essential factor of emotional intelligence. Knowledge and proper use of these rules leads to optimal impact, while ignorance of them, on the contrary, fosters emotional disaster.

Actors are true masters at displaying emotions and their expressiveness elicits a response from their audience. And there is no doubt that there are people who are true born actors. Underlying every relationship is a subterranean exchange of moods that leads us to perceive some encounters as toxic and others as nourishing. This emotional exchange often takes place at such a subtle and imperceptible level. In every encounter we have, we emit emotional signals and these signals affect the people around us.

The more socially adept we are, the more control we have over the signals we emit. After all, the rules of civility are a way of making sure that no unbridled emotions will hinder our relationship. Emotional intelligence includes the mastery of this exchange, and whoever masters it achieves what is known as: emotional harmony.


The degree of emotional harmony that a person experiences in a given encounter is reflected in the way he adapts his physical movements to those of his interlocutor. Synchrony seems to facilitate the emission and reception of moods, even negative moods, since it seems that the greater the degree of physical harmony between two people, the greater the similarity between their moods, regardless of whether they are optimistic or pessimistic.

Those who are more adept at tuning into the moods of others or at imposing their own moods on others are also emotionally kinder. The distinguishing feature of a true leader is precisely his or her ability to connect with an audience of thousands of people. Emotional mobilization is the very essence of the ability to influence others. And this empathetic quality is conducive to the development of other facets of emotional intelligence.

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