The 9 Sources of Emotions and Moods

Emotions and moods can be caused by many reasons.

Personality

As all individuals, we must have built-in tendencies to experience certain moods and emotions more frequently than others do. We also differ in how intensely we experience the same emotion, while those who are affectively intense, experience good and bad moods and emotions more deeply.

Day of the week or time of the day

You will have guessed by now that people tend to be in their worst moods early in the week and in their best moods late in the week. Monday morning is therefore not the best time to reveal bad news or ask someone for a favour.

Weather

Have you heard of illusory correlation? It is the tendency of people to associate two events when in reality there is no connection. Many people think so, but the weather has little influence on our mood.

Stress

Stress can affect our moods and emotions negatively. The effects build over time and constant levels of stress can worsen our moods and emotions.

Social activities

For most us, social activities increase positive mood and have little effect on negative mood. Positive mood seeks out social interactions. Physical, informal and epicurean activities are more strongly related to positive moods than formal and sedentary events.

Sleep

I bet that sleep is by far your favourite source! Indeed, sleep quality does affect mood. If you are tired, you are more likely to feel fatigue, anger and hostility, and therefore, it can impair decision-making and make it difficult to control emotions.

Exercise

Another favourite, no? It should be! In fact, exercise enhances our positive mood. This is especially good for depressed people.

Age

Negative emotions seem to occur less, as people get older. Highly positive moods last longer for older individuals while bad moods fade more quickly than for younger people. Emotional experience improves with age.

Gender

Women are more emotionally expressive than men. They experience them more intensely and hold onto emotions longer than men. They display more frequent expressions of positive and negative emotions, except anger. This is because men are taught to be tough and brave. Women are social and nurturing, so they show more positive moods.

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