The word emotion includes a wide range of observable behaviors, expressed feelings, and changes in the body state. Emotions are feelings. Emotional communication, then, refers to the act of communicating your feelings. This is also known as “emotional intelligence” or “social intelligence.” There are six principles of emotion and emotional messages.
1. Emotions may be primary or blended:
A primary emotion is a basic emotion. These would be the eight basic emotions: joy, acceptance, fear, surprise, sadness, disgust, anger and anticipation. Emotions that are close to each other on this wheel are also to close to each other in meanings. In this model there are also blends. These blended are the combinations of primary emotions. They are noted at the outside the wheel. For example, according to this model, love is a blend of joy and acceptance, whereas remorse is a blend of disgust and sadness.
2. Emotions are influenced by body, mind, and culture:
Emotions involve at least three parts: bodily reactions, mental evaluation and interpretations and cultural rules and beliefs. Bodily reactions to emotions are pretty obvious and include things like blushing when you’re embarrassed, nervous habits, or sweaty palms. The mental and cognitive part of emotion experiences involves the evaluation and interpretations you make on the basis of what you experiences. For example, you may feel angry if someone is rude or insensitive to you on purpose. Culture also dictates how we should express and interpret our emotions as well. For example, Chinese students show respect by being quiet and passive. Asking questions would imply that the teacher was not clear on the lecture.
3. Emotions may be adaptive and maladaptive:
Emotions are often adaptive that is, they can help you adjust appropriately to situation. For example, if you’re worried you won’t do well in something, you’ll work harder to prepare for that situation. Emotions may be maladaptive and may get in the way of your accomplishing your goals. For example, if you are so anxious about a situation that you don’t prepare for it. In other ways emotions can create problems is in a tendency that some theorists have cleverly called catastrophizing “taking a problem even a minor one and make it in to a catastrophe.
4. Emotions are communicated verbally and nonverbally:
According to DeVito (2009), “Theorists do not agree over whether you can choose the emotions you feel. Some argue that you can; others argue that you cannot. You are, however, in control of the ways in which you express your emotions”. In some instances you determine whether you want to express your emotions in full, but with other times you censor your emotions.
5. Emotional expression is governed by display rules:
We’ve talked about display rules before, but to refresh your mind it is what is and is not appropriate to do. The differences we see are in the emotional expression. Men and women also have gender display rules for what is and isn’t appropriate to express within his or her culture. For example, it’s appropriate in our culture for women to divulge a lot of their emotions and feelings; however, it is not seen in the same light when men divulge all of their emotions to other men.
6. Emotions are contagious:
Emotions can be contagious. If you think of a time where one person starts laughing, and then the people around start laughing, you can see this theory working. Emotional contagion is defined as emotions passing from one person to another. Another form of emotional contagion deals with persuasions utilizing emotional appeals.