The Language of Emotion

Check this post The Language of Emotion from EQ Library:

So, here’s the definition of emotion from “biology online”:


a strong feeling, aroused mental state, or intense state of drive or unrest directed toward a definite object and evidenced in both behaviour and in psychologic changes, with accompanying autonomic nervous system manifestations.

Origin: L. E-moveo, pp. -motus, to move out, agitate

So, I think this is so interesting for several reasons. The language is incredibly scientific, although given the source you would expect someone reasonably science-versed to be accessing data here, but it has such a clinical and almost negative feel. There are quite a few references to emotions being outside our realm of control, as if emotion is something that happens ‘to’ us and our job is simply to endure the aftermath. How do we begin to adjust this in our individual spheres of influence? How do we make a difference in the way the role of emotion is perceived and the way we value it as input data that we can work with, not endure? The Six Seconds Conference these last few days had many examples of using and blending emotion into different occupational realms. Leading by example. Thanks all, for elegantly showing us how you do what you do!

We hear often that emotion is touchy-feely or soft and yet here we are reading all these scientific and biology-based definitions of the word. Interesting to be doing work in that place of intersection.

Just for fun, here are a few other definitions of emotion floating around out there:


Emotion is the complex psychophysiological experience of an individual’s state of mind as interacting with biochemical and environmental influences. In humans, emotion fundamentally involves “physiological arousal, expressive behaviors, and conscious experience“.[1] Emotion is associated with mood, temperament, personality and disposition, and motivation. The English word ‘emotion’ is derived from the French word émouvoir. This is based on the Latin emovere, where e- (variant of ex-) means ‘out’ and movere means ‘move’.[2] The related term “motivation” is also derived from the word movere.

The “free online dictionary” and

e·mo·tion  (-mshn)n. 1. A mental state that arises spontaneously rather than through conscious effort and is often accompanied by physiological changes; a feeling: the emotions of joy, sorrow, reverence, hate, and love. 2. A state of mental agitation or disturbance: spoke unsteadily in a voice that betrayed his emotion. See Synonyms at feeling.3. The part of the consciousness that involves feeling; sensibility: Merriam-Webster:a obsolete : disturbance b : excitement2 a : the affective aspect of consciousness : feeling b : a state of feeling c : a conscious mental reaction (as anger or fear) subjectively experienced as strong feeling usually directed toward a specific object and typically accompanied by physiological and behavioral changes in the body



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