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EMOTIONS: FEELING, THINKING, AND COMMUNICATING

CHAPTER TOPICS
What are Emotions? Influences on Emotional Expression Guidelines for Expressing Emotions Managing Difficult Emotions

Looking Out/Looking In
Thirteenth Edition

What Are Emotions?


Physiological Factors
Strong emotions are coupled with strong physiological factors
Physical components of fear:
Increased heart rate Rise in blood pressure Increase in adrenaline secretions Elevated blood sugar A slowing of the digestive system

EMOTIONS: FEELING, THINKING, AND COMMUNICATING

What are Emotions?


Nonverbal Reactions
Feelings are often apparent by observable reactions
Appearance Changes
Blushing, sweating, etc

Behavioral Changes
Facial expression Posture Gestures Different vocal tone or rate

EMOTIONS: FEELING, THINKING, AND COMMUNICATING

What are Emotions?


Cognitive Interpretations
The mind plays an important role in determining emotional states
The symptoms of fear discussed earlier are similar to those of excitement, joy and other emotions If you were to monitor someone having a strong emotional reaction, you would have a hard time ascertaining which emotion the person was experiencing

EMOTIONS: FEELING, THINKING, AND COMMUNICATING

What are Emotions?


Verbal Expression
Words can be required to discover the depth or intensity of the emotion At times we cant rely on perceptiveness to be sure a message is communicated
Is a new acquaintance mistaking your friendlessness as a come-on? Is a lovers unenthusiastic response a sign of boredom with you, or something less personal?

EMOTIONS: FEELING, THINKING, AND COMMUNICATING

Influences on Emotional Expression


Personality
There is a clear relationship between personality and the way we experience and express emotions
Extroverts tend to report more positive emotions Neurotic individuals tend to report more negative emotions

Personality doesnt have to govern your communication satisfaction


EMOTIONS: FEELING, THINKING, AND COMMUNICATING

Influences on Emotional Expression


Culture
A significant factor that influences emotional expression in different cultures is whether that culture is:
Individualistic (United States and Canada)
These cultures feel comfortable revealing their emotions to people with whom they are close

Collectivistic (Japan and India)


These cultures prize harmony and discourage expressions of negative emotions which may upset relationships
EMOTIONS: FEELING, THINKING, AND COMMUNICATING

Influences on Emotional Expression


Gender
Biological sex is the best predictor of the ability to detect/interpret emotional expression
Research suggests that there is some truth to the unexpressive male In one study, females were 10-15% more accurate in remembering emotional images

People in close relationships are likely to experience/express more emotions than those who are not
EMOTIONS: FEELING, THINKING, AND COMMUNICATING

Influences on Emotional Expression


Social Conventions
The unwritten rules of communication discourage the direct expression of emotion
How many genuine emotional expressions do you or we see in daily life? Social rules even discourage too much expression of positive feelings

Emotion Labor
Managing or even suppressing emotions is both appropriate and necessary
EMOTIONS: FEELING, THINKING, AND COMMUNICATING

Influences on Emotional Expression


Fear of Self-Disclosure
In a society that discourages the expression of emotions, revealing them can seem risky

Emotional Contagion
The process by which emotions are transferred from one person to another
Is it possible to catch someones mood? Emotions become more infectious with prolonged contact
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Guidelines for Expressing Emotion


There is not a universal rule for expression of emotion
Personality, culture, gender, play a part The key is to express emotion constructively
Think about a time when you expressed your emotion clearly, then wish you hadnt.

Those who control their feelings and deny distress are more likely to get a host of ailments, including cancer and heart disease
EMOTIONS: FEELING, THINKING, AND COMMUNICATING

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Guidelines for Expressing Emotion


Recognize Your Feelings
Beyond being aware, also try to identify

Recognize the difference between feeling, talking and acting Expand your emotional vocabulary Share multiple feelings
You might often express anger but overlook confusion, disappointment or frustration
EMOTIONS: FEELING, THINKING, AND COMMUNICATING

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Guidelines for Expressing Emotion


Consider When and Where to Express Your Feelings
Give yourself time to discover the gravity of the emotion before full expression

Accept responsibility for your feelings


Instead of saying:
Youre making me angry! try Im getting angry. You hurt my feelings, say I feel hurt when you do that.
EMOTIONS: FEELING, THINKING, AND COMMUNICATING

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Guidelines for Expressing Emotion


Be Mindful of the Communication Channel
Mediated Channels
Email Instant Message SMS Message

Is it appropriate to end a relationship via voicemail? What is the result of using CAPITAL LETTERS in an instant message or email?
EMOTIONS: FEELING, THINKING, AND COMMUNICATING

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Managing Difficult Emotions


Facilitative and Debilitative Emotions
Facilitative Emotions
Are emotions which contribute to effective functioning

Debilitative Emotions
Are emotions which detract from effective functioning

Intensity
Anger or irritation may be beneficial Rage usually makes matters worse
EMOTIONS: FEELING, THINKING, AND COMMUNICATING

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Managing Difficult Emotions


Sources of Debilitative Emotions
Our genetic makeup Emotional memory
Harmless events can trigger debilitative feelings

Self-talk

EMOTIONS: FEELING, THINKING, AND COMMUNICATING

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Managing Difficult Emotions


Self-Talk
Interpretations people make of an event, during the process of self-talk that determine their feelings

Event
Being called names Being called names

Thought
Ive done something wrong. My friend must be sick.

Feeling
hurt, upset concern, sympathy

EMOTIONS: FEELING, THINKING, AND COMMUNICATING

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Managing Difficult Emotions


Irrational Thinking The Fallacies
The Fallacy of Perfection
The belief that a worthwhile communication should be able to handle every situation

The Fallacy of Approval


That it is vital to gain the approval of virtually every person

EMOTIONS: FEELING, THINKING, AND COMMUNICATING

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Managing Difficult Emotions


Irrational Thinking
The Fallacy of Shoulds
The inability to distinguish between what is and what should be

The Fallacy of Overgeneralization


Basing a decision on limited information When we exaggerate shortcomings

The Fallacy of Causation


The irrational belief that emotions are caused by others rather than by ones own self-talk
EMOTIONS: FEELING, THINKING, AND COMMUNICATING

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Managing Difficult Emotions


Irrational Thinking
The Fallacy of Helplessness
Satisfaction in life is determined by forces beyond your control

The Fallacy of Catastrophic Expectations


The assumption that if something bad can happen, then it is going to happen

EMOTIONS: FEELING, THINKING, AND COMMUNICATING

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Managing Difficult Emotions


Minimizing Debilitative Emotions
Monitor your emotional reactions Note the activating event Record your self-talk Reappraise your irrational beliefs Replace self-defeating self-talk with more constructive thinking

EMOTIONS: FEELING, THINKING, AND COMMUNICATING

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Chapter Review
What are Emotions? Influences on Emotional Expression Guidelines for Expressing Emotions Managing Difficult Emotions

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