The positive emotions are psychophysiological reactions, a reaction both our bodies and our minds , appearing at a time determined.
Many times when we speak of emotions we do not know exactly what we are referring to and we often use it as synonyms of exaltation, alteration or commotion.
But emotions are not just negative feelings or excitement, humans also have positive emotions, and these are very important for our well-being and our health.
However, it seems that in our society positive emotions are not too important, and despite their enormous value, they are not much of a consideration .
I think that knowing what the positive emotions humans have and knowing how to manage and increase them correctly should be a basic knowledge for everyone.
You may also be interested in this list with 270 emotions .
Characteristics of positive emotions
They usually appear when we perceive some stimulus that due to its qualities or characteristics produces a certain reaction.
For example, if you walk alone down a dark, deserted street, and suddenly hear a strange noise, hopefully you will experience an emotion of fear or alert at that moment .
Likewise, if you are sitting on the couch and suddenly your son is very happy, telling you that he has made a mark on the test he did last week, you will surely experience an emotion of joy.
The first case would be a clear example of negative emotion and the second of positive emotion.
Although negative emotions often play an adaptive role and need to be experienced on certain occasions (if in the previous example the noise was caused by someone who wants to attack you, it is preferable that you respond with fear or alertness), positive emotions are vital For our well-being.
Put another way: if you never experience positive emotions, you will never be happy, happy or satisfied, you will never have fun, and you will not have psychological well-being .
However, positive emotions have an advantage over negatives, and this is that you can take actions to make them appear more and benefit more from them.
As we have said, negative emotions fulfill an adaptive function, so sometimes they need to appear, but the management you can make of them is limited to trying to appear only when necessary.
For example: with fear, all you can do is try to appear only when it is necessary to experience it, that is, when there is a real threat.
If you do, you will have managed to perform an adequate management of fear and therefore will prevent this emotion from damaging your well-being.
However, with positive emotions the thing changes, because if you manage to manage them properly you will not only get hurt, but you can benefit from them to have greater well-being.
The more positive emotions you experience during the day, the better you will feel.
This does not mean that you have to be experiencing positive emotions all day like crazy, since as we have said negative emotions are also necessary.
In the same way, being experiencing emotions all day would not be good either, since moments of calm and absence of emotions are also necessary.
However, you will surely agree with me if I say that positive emotions are often very expensive, and experiencing them on a regular basis is not a simple task.
Moreover, as Frederickson pointed out at the turn of the century, positive emotions not only serve to improve our psychological well-being and increase happiness.
Positive emotions also optimize health, prevent illness and reduce anxiety.
Likewise, they favor an efficient, flexible and creative reasoning, expand the repertoire of thoughts and actions of the person, and reinforce their resources, be it physical, intellectual and social.
It is for all that, that it is very important to know what the positive emotions that human beings have are and to know what we can do to increase their appearance.
The 10 most important positive emotions and how to increase them
Humor refers to the ability to experience or stimulate laughter.
However, this emotion does not stay there, since what makes it especially important is that it allows interpreting positively the situations that can be threatening.
In addition, several researches have shown that laughter is directly related to considerable benefits in the muscular and cardiovascular systems, so experiencing this emotion favors our health.
Thus, humor is an important positive emotion to which it is essential that we expose ourselves frequently.
To manage it properly is not “we take everything with humor” as its name may suggest, but it is important to do two important actions:
- Interpret in detail if those situations that put you in a bad mood are always justified, that is, if they are situations that constitute a real threat. If they are not, it is preferable that you try to experience a positive emotion.
- Frequently expose yourself to stimuli that provoke humor directly: watch a movie or TV series fun, stay with that friend with whom you always end up laughing, pay attention to funny jokes or anecdotes, etc.
Joy is a universally known emotion that is characterized by experiencing a grateful and living feeling.
It directly generates a feeling of general well-being, and also prevents us from its opposite emotion, sadness.
Joy is experienced through pleasurable experiences, and it is certain that if we do not currently possess this kind of experience it is difficult to appear.
However, if you have not experienced the feeling of joy in a long time, you can do it today.
Lie down in bed, relax, close your eyes and try to remember with maximum detail the last situation that made you experience the feeling of joy.
Simply with the imagination of a pleasant and happy experience, you will get to appreciate this emotion.
Sometimes the routine, the work or the stress makes that we do not have too many stimuli that produce us joy but that is not excuse to not expose to her, closes the eyes and remembers how it was.
Few people interpret interest as an emotion but in fact it is. Interest is that emotion that allows you to focus your attention on something concrete.
And being interested in things is one of the basic needs of our brains.
The moment you get interested in something, your motivation increases, your desire to stay active and desire to discover new things.
So, do not allow yourself the luxury of not being interested in anything, if you do, you will be much more vulnerable to negative emotions, your life will be more boring and you will have less sources of gratification.
Each person has different interests and tastes, so no one can recommend anyone to take interest in any particular concept.
However, you must keep in mind that the more interest you have and the more enjoyment of them, the greater your gratification and the more positive emotions you will have.
Still do not know what your interests are? Look for them today!
The flow (flow) is that emotion that is experienced when we are totally immersed in the activity that we are realizing.
At that moment, all our attention, all our thoughts and all our emotions are centered on the activity, to the point of losing the notion of time.
This sensation of fullness and optimum functioning can be experienced in a great number of activities: when practicing some sport, when singing, dancing, painting …
The truth is that there is no secret formula to access this state, but surely if you have experienced it you will know very well what it is.
The most effective way to achieve it is to perform that activity that you are most passionate about.
So, expose as many times as you can to the activity that allows you to achieve this emotion.
The fun would be that emotion similar to fluency but experienced less intensely.
The disadvantage is clear, with an activity you can have fun but not experience fluency, so the emotion you feel will not be so pleasurable.
However, there is one advantage: you can have fun with a wider range of activities.
Fluency is achieved with very specific activities, and most people usually experience it only in one activity (or none at all), so exposure to this emotion is often poor.
However, the fun can be experienced in many activities.
What do you enjoy? Expose them whenever you can, never miss an opportunity to have fun.
Pride is that emotion that comes when we are content or satisfied with what we are, do, or achieve.
It is an important emotion because it allows us to raise self – esteem , more confidence in ourselves and be less vulnerable to negative emotions like the guilt or envy.
To increase this emotion, the exercise is simple: check everything you are, everything you have and everything you do, and ask yourself why you should not be proud of it?
Sometimes we think that only extraordinary or very successful people can feel proud of themselves but this is not so, we all have something that we can feel proud of.
Lifting is that emotion we experience when we feel satisfied that we have done a good deed.
The best exercise to experience this emotion is to help someone who needs support, and thus to make you happy.
Lifting is a very important emotion because it is accompanied by a strong feeling of affection, “makes us feel”, and makes us to be at peace with ourselves.
Start practicing good deeds and you will see how rewarding this emotion is.
Resilience is possibly the most difficult positive emotion to experience. It is experienced when we are able to face adversities, overcome them and get something positive from them.
So, it is an emotion of enormous value, because it allows us to turn negative emotions into positive ones.
Unlike the rest of the emotions, this is not one to which we must expose ourselves frequently, since to appear it is necessary to be immersed in a negative and stressful situation.
However, it is vital that when you are in one of those situations do not forget that as all human beings possess this ability.
Never forget that however hard the situation you are in, if you strive to follow your path there will come a time when you will recover and transform the negative event into something positive for you.
Many people think that tranquility is an antonym of emotion, but this is not so.
That feeling of serenity when things go well, experiencing a state of peace and tranquility, is a basic emotion for the human being, with enormous physical and psychological benefits.
Try to spend a few minutes each day sitting in your armchair and unconcerned about everything in your head, spend a moment to feel the calm inside.
Finally, welfare is a state of personal satisfaction that is achieved by considering as positive the areas that make up a person’s life: personal, social, family and work.
In fact, well-being could be considered the “sine qua non” condition of happiness.
When we experience this emotion we become more creative, we are more proud of our way of being and we work with greater motivation.
It is true that to experience this situation we must consider the areas of our life as positive, but obviously, the interpretation we make about these aspects will be subjective, it will depend on us.
Can the realms of your life be interpreted as positive? Why not? What prevents you from experiencing well-being?
Ask yourself these questions and you probably have no reason not to feel that your life is satisfying.