Getting in touch with emotions, we quite literally take a look at the face of the 6 emotions and what this reveals about function.
Communication and Emotion 4
Become aware of the emotions and the message they send, the message you exude toward others that they might pick up and the emotions of those you surround yourself with.
There are, (according to scientists), six ‘basic’ emotions, “Happy”, “Sad”, “Angry”, “Scared”, Surprised” and “Disgusted.” These then are the core ’emotional’ responses we have, emotions that can then be used as a sorting pot for all other feelings. But we will explore more about all the other feelings later, exploring the core emotions as our starting point in learning more not only about your feelings, but also about their function.
This is because emotions serve an essential purpose. They are functional.
An emotion is your bodies reaction to some internal or external event. A very necessary part of activating or relaxing your body, this includes the physical changes and the motivation to act with emotions a key part of the energy system, necessary achieve anything (and everything).
Not really what you expected, but take a closer look as we will bring this idea to life, starting with the face of feelings.
Wide open eyes, eyebrows that are raised so they become curved and high. Open eyelids, with the upper lid raised and the lower lid drawn down, often exposing the white of the eye. Pupil dilation. A dropped jaw so that the lips and teeth are parted, with no tension around the mouth. Horizontal wrinkles across the forehead.
And what about it’s function? LOOK! The main function of the emotion of surprise. That’s right, surprise acts to interrupt an ongoing action and reorient ATTENTION to a new, possibly significant event. Can you see this in the face of surprise? Can you see this in the wide open eyes?
This is because attention is a core ‘focus’ of this feeling?
Great. Now go ahead, and make the face of surprise. Open your eyes wide, remembering to raise your eyebrows as you do. Can you feel the ’emotion’ of surprise? Can you sense how your mind look for what is ‘surprising’ and what you may have missed? How the feeling looks to direct your attention, asking what it is that has caused this ‘feeling’
In fact ATTENTION is a major part of all our emotions.
Something has our attention, because of how we FEEL about it, and what has our attention influences how we FEEL.
This is why so many mental health and stress management techniques focus on what has and holds your attention, from mindfulness to meditation, and everything in between. However these techniques need to be practiced for them to be effective, because re-directing attention when emotions are pulling your attention in a different direction takes training!
But before looking at these techniques lets take a look at the face of the other core emotions. Let’s look at the facial expressions, and what they tells us about that emotion and the functions of attention (and focus).
Take a look at how attention ‘shows’ in each EMOTION and what that expression shows about the nature of attention in that feeling. The goal, to become both mindfully aware of emotion and the way in which your body expresses it.
However to achieve this it is important that you make the face, listening to experience of it and how it influence what you feel.
The goal, to become both mindfully aware of emotion and the way in which your body expresses it. If you are working with children they will play along in a game of pretend, ‘acting’ out the emotion. If you are doing the exercises yourself, over exaggerate the expression and then listen to your ‘heart’ and ”feelings’, look into how each muscle is sensed internally, before looking in the mirror and see just how it reflects on your face.