Is it physically possible to laugh while being angry?

Is it physically possible to laugh while being angry?

We are searching data for your request:

Forums and discussions:
Manuals and reference books:
Data from registers:
Wait the end of the search in all databases.
Upon completion, a link will appear to access the found materials.

I have heard that it is impossible to both laugh and be angry. I tried and wasn't able to do it, even with simulated laughter and anger.

Is it possible to laugh and be angry?

As with all questions about emotion, the answer depends on how you define "emotion." Long post ahead… :P

Anger as basic

On the one hand, we have basic emotion theories, most famously advanced by Ekman, Tomkins, and Friesen and rooted in the work of Darwin. Basically, these theories suggest that emotions correspond to circumscribed regions of the brain (e.g., the amygdala for fear) and respectively involve specific and consistent patterns of facial, behavioral, physiological, neural, and experiential responses.

According to this view, anger is a basic, universal emotion that is constituted by a specific set of facial movements, with which laughter would be incompatible. So this theory would not predict that you could laugh while angry.

Anger as constructed

The most recent theories of emotion are called "constructionist"--although their ideas date back to William James (late 19th century). Constructionist theories have been most famously advanced by Lisa Feldman Barrett and James Russell. This view deeply challenges the basic-theory assumptions that emotions are discrete, universal, and modular.

Instead, according to one constructionist account (Conceptual Act Theory), emotions emerge when we make meaning out of our situated affective experiences (to put it very simply). In this sense, emotions are just concepts that can be applied to a heterogeneous population of experiences/contexts that share some statistical regularity (e.g., instances of fear often share the presence of threat/danger).

So, one instance of anger need not look like another (e.g., many different facial expressions, CNS/PNS patterns, etc.), but in general I'll know what you mean when you say you're angry. Not to mention, your concept of anger may even be different than mine. This means that you might conceptualize some instances as "anger" that I would not. So you would experience anger in situations that I would not. One such situation might be where you're laughing. If you thought laughter signaled anger, then you might infer from your laughter that you are angry.

So this theory would predict that it is definitely possible to laugh when angry. Although, the more precise prediction would be: it is possible to be angry when you laugh.


I realize these theories are slightly confusing/complex (especially the second one)! I've read at least 600 pages about constructionism, and I still have to remind myself what it says exactly (it gets much more abstract).

I'll be frank and say that I completely reject the "Anger as basic" account. Basic emotion theories are hanging on by a thread at this point, in my opinion--there's a huge and still growing body of evidence against them. So my inclination is with the latter prediction: you can certainly be angry when you laugh.

A Take-Home Message

This article provides readers with a comprehensive look at humor as an important concept in positive psychology. Top humor theories are described, along with the role of humor as both a defense mechanism and character strength. Some key takeaways are as follows:

    Self-enhancing humor is an invaluable strength that supports human thriving.

Doable techniques for adding more humor to one’s life, meaningful quotes, useful books, and resources from are also included. With this collection of information, it is the hope that readers will better understand humor and its many benefits, while maybe even enjoying a few chuckles along the way.

And so, with laughter and love, we lived happily ever after.

We hope you enjoyed reading this article and had a giggle too. Don’t forget to download our three Resilience Exercises for free.

If you wish to learn more about resilience, consider our Realizing Resilience Masterclass©. The masterclass is a complete, science-based, six-module resilience training template for practitioners that contains all the materials you’ll need to help your clients overcome adversity in a more resilient way.

Reactions to Avoid with a Yeller

The worst possible reaction to a yeller is to mirror their behavior. Things do not go well if you yell at someone who is yelling at you. The situation escalates when both people engage in yelling. There are other reactions that can escalate the situation which should also be avoided and include: baiting the yeller, challenging what they are saying, acting defensive, and criticizing the person during the confrontation.

There are better ways to deal with a yeller. Below are the steps you should use to handle and hopefully diffuse a yeller.

1. Stay calm and don&rsquot feed into their anger. Remember that when a person is yelling, it is not you that has the problem, it is them. They have poor coping skills or another reason for yelling that has nothing to do with you personally. If you react they will react to your reaction and things will continue to escalate. Remain calm, even if you are seething on the inside. It is not worth feeding into their yelling, as the situation will just get worse and things are rarely resolved when two parties are yelling at one another. Problems are more likely to be solved when calm tones are being used. Be a part of the solution and not the problem by remaining calm and using a calm tone of voice.

2. Take a mental step back to assess the situation. Before taking any action in the situation, pause mentally to assess things. This will allow you to figure out whether it is worth waiting out the yeller or to leave the situation. If you are being yelled at by a casual acquaintance and you don&rsquot care if you offend them by walking away from them, then by all means walk away. You don&rsquot have to subject yourself to someone&rsquos abuse and mistreatment if they are not important to your life. If it&rsquos your boss yelling at you and you know that walking away while your boss is yelling mid sentence may cost you your job, maybe you need to think about waiting it out and address the yelling with the boss later if it is a constant occurrence and it is now disruptive to your ability to work effectively.

3. Do not agree with the yeller to diffuse them, as it encourages future yelling. If you agree with the yeller to diffuse them and subsequently agree to do something or say something that they are asking, you are condoning their yelling. By being agreeable to someone who is yelling at you, it only encourages them to yell at you to get their way in the future. Avoid this type of diffusing method, it will come back to bite you again in the future and you will find yourself subject to their yelling more often.

4. Calmly address the yelling. In most instances when someone is yelling at you, your emotions are evoked and you feel the need to react. Reacting with yelling, criticism, or other negative responses will escalate the situation, you need to do everything in your power to reel in your thoughts and feelings so you can address the real problem, which is their yelling. Let the person know that you will not accept being yelled at, regardless of the situation or problem. Say this politely and calmly, and you are more likely to have a positive reaction, such as an apology or at least make them aware that they are in fact yelling. Some people don&rsquot even realize they are yelling. Then your next step is to ask for a break away from this person.

5. Ask for a break from this person. After you have calmly addressed the yelling, the next step is to request that you take a break from this person to think. You may also need the time to calm down yourself, as their yelling has caused your adrenaline to rise sky high and you don&rsquot know how much longer you can hold it all inside. When you are asking for a break from the person, it should be more of a statement than a question, especially if it&rsquos not your boss. If it&rsquos a spouse, friend, or someone else, it is completely acceptable to state that you need a break and time (a few minutes, a day, or whatever YOU need) to think things through in order to respond appropriately and calmly.

6. When you feel your emotions have calmed down, and you know how to address whatever it was they were yelling about, you can now go back to talk to the person. Give yourself time to process the situation, what was said, and how you want to respond. For some situations, for example an in-law relationship, this can take a few days as emotions can take longer to de-escalate. If it&rsquos a boss and you know you can&rsquot sit on the issue for long because there are deadlines or your job at stake, then use some calming techniques such as deep breathing or visualization methods to process the situation more quickly, so you can get back to them sooner than later. Here&rsquore 3 Deep Breathing Exercises recommendations for you.

Laughter is Contagious

The discovery of mirror neurons—what causes you to smile when someone smiles at you—gives credence to the belief that laughter is contagious.

When you’re feeling down finding friends to laugh with can help your brain trigger its own laughter response and foster closeness, both of which contribute to your sense of well-being. Why do you think that sense of humor is such an important trait when looking for a partner? We like the feeling of shared laughter and our body wants as much of this feeling as possible.

Getting Red in the Face

istockphoto Getting hot can make your face red - and that goes for emotional "heat" as well as hot temperatures as measured on a thermometer. Anger can also cause labor breathing, fidgeting, and even pacing back and forth. Anger clearly effects the body as well as the mind. In fact, numerous studies have shown that angry people are more likely to have high blood pressure and to suffer a stroke or heart attack.


Laughter is a physical reaction consisting usually of rhythmical, often audible contractions of the diaphragm and other parts of the respiratory system. It is a response to certain external or internal stimuli. Laughter can arise from such activities as being tickled, [1] or from humorous stories or thoughts. [2] Most commonly, it is considered an auditory expression of a number of positive emotional states, such as joy, mirth, happiness, relief, etc. On some occasions, however, it may be caused by contrary emotional states such as embarrassment, surprise, or confusion such as nervous laughter or courtesy laugh. Age, gender, education, language, and culture are all indicators [3] as to whether a person will experience laughter in a given situation. Some other species of primate (chimpanzees, gorillas and orangutans) show laughter-like vocalizations in response to physical contact such as wrestling, play chasing or tickling.

Laughter is a part of human behavior regulated by the brain, helping humans clarify their intentions in social interaction and providing an emotional context to conversations. Laughter is used as a signal for being part of a group—it signals acceptance and positive interactions with others. Laughter is sometimes seen as contagious, and the laughter of one person can itself provoke laughter from others as a positive feedback. [4] [5] [6] [7]

The study of humor and laughter, and its psychological and physiological effects on the human body, is called gelotology.

Choosing a positive attitude about the physical illness

British scholars of The Institute of Integrative Health studied people who had experienced a variety of traumas, from physical, mental, or emotional to ongoing disabling conditions. They explain that, “Moving from being wounded, through suffering to healing, is possible. It is facilitated by developing safe, trusting relationships and by positive reframing that moves through the weight of responsibility to the ability to respond.”

Positive-thinking people apply the following positive thoughts. “I …

  • … learn, grow, and forgive myself if I made a mistake.”
  • … congratulate myself on trying.”
  • … fail to blame anyone.”
  • … don’t hold regrets.”
  • … focus on how much better next time will be because I’ll know the trigger.”
  • … can see and laugh about my usual tendencies to hunch my shoulders and I can choose to drop my shoulders and relax those muscles.”
  • … choose to take several nice deep breaths.”
  • … can choose to know that I am safe, even with my eyes closed.”
  • … give myself the gift of a relaxing moment.”
  • … trust my inner guidance.”

Be inspired to release the stigma of mental illness by these celebrities who are doing it.

Choosing your attitude is taught even in management to improve employee morale. The Pike Place Fish Market in Seattle, WA inspired the FiSH Philosophy training program. This program basically tells the world that you can have a job where you have to handle fish all day or you can have a job where you have a great time and engage with others in a fun way while doing that same thing. You get to choose.

In other words, we can take back a portion of our sense of control in an uncontrollable world. How? We choose to smile about a tense situation and our reaction to it. If you can reframe your fearful thoughts about being triggered by emotional trauma into having a laugh at your response, maybe others will have a laugh too, not at you, but at what they see of themselves in your honest vulnerability.

Expressing anger in healthy ways

Suggestions on how to express your anger in healthy ways include:

  • If you feel out of control, walk away from the situation temporarily, until you cool down.
  • Recognise and accept the emotion as normal and part of life.
  • Try to pinpoint the exact reasons why you feel angry.
  • Once you have identified the problem, consider coming up with different strategies for how to remedy the situation.
  • Do something physical, such as going for a run or playing sport.
  • Talk to someone you trust about how you’re feeling.

Rage (emotion)

Old French raige, rage (French: rage), from Medieval Latin rabia, from Latin rabies ("anger fury") akin to Sanskrit rabhas (violence). [2] The Vulgar Latin spelling of the word possesses many cognates when translated into many of the modern Romance languages, such as Spanish, Galician, Catalan, Portuguese, and modern Italian: rabia, rabia, ràbia, raiva, and rabbia respectively.

Rage can sometimes lead to a state of mind where the individuals experiencing it believe they can do, and often are capable of doing, things that may normally seem physically impossible. Those experiencing rage usually feel the effects of high adrenaline levels in the body. This increase in adrenal output raises the physical strength and endurance levels of the person and sharpens their senses, while dulling the sensation of pain. High levels of adrenaline impair memory. Temporal perspective is also affected: people in a rage have described experiencing events in slow-motion. Time dilation occurs due to the individual becoming hyper aware of the hind brain (the seat of fight or flight) [ citation needed ] . Rational thought and reasoning would inhibit an individual from acting rapidly upon impulse. An older explanation of this "time dilation" effect is that instead of actually slowing our perception of time, high levels of adrenaline increase our ability to recall specific minutiae of an event after it occurs. Since humans gauge time based on the number of things they can remember, high-adrenaline events such as those experienced during periods of rage seem to unfold more slowly. [3]

A person in a state of rage may also lose much of their capacity for rational thought and reasoning, and may act, usually violently, on their impulses to the point that they may attack until they themselves have been incapacitated or the source of their rage has been destroyed. A person in rage may also experience tunnel vision, muffled hearing, increased heart rate, and hyperventilation. Their vision may also become "rose-tinted" (hence "seeing red"). They often focus only on the source of their anger. The large amounts of adrenaline and oxygen in the bloodstream may cause a person's extremities to shake. Psychiatrists consider rage to be at one end of the spectrum of anger, and annoyance to be at the other side. [4]

In 1995, rage was hypothesized to occur when oxytocin, vasopressin, and corticotropin-releasing hormone are rapidly released from the hypothalamus. This results in the pituitary gland producing and releasing large amounts of the adrenocorticotropic hormone, which causes the adrenal cortex to release corticosteroids. This chain reaction occurs when faced with a threatening situation. [5]

Nearly two decades later, more came to be known about the impacts of high epinephrine. As the focus in neuroscience began to shift towards the roles of white matter tissues, a more full bodied understanding of this complex emotion was able to be extrapolated.

Memory, being the “retention of perceptions”, can be viewed as a giant mosaic.(Robertson, 2002) [ citation needed ] This mosaic would consist of fragmented perceptions (tiles) being held together by astrocytes (glue), creating resistance. A ratio of 3:2 could indicate an increased demand on neurons being held together, or insulated. This also raises the possibility that a more developed memory improved an individual’s fitness.

In addition, an increase in white matter tissues assisted in an individual's ability to adapt to new cultures and environments. The metaphor of a kaleidoscope is often utilized when expressing the extraordinary ability humans have at adapting to different cultures by engaging in different patterns of thought. Our ability to perceive patterns of behavior assists in our ability to utilize inductive reasoning, a type of reasoning that can assist in an individual's ability to think of how their behaviors may impact their future. Such lines of reasoning are strengthened through the use of deductive reasoning. Together, inductive and deductive reasoning have assisted in developing adaptive conflict management strategies that assist in the cessation of rage caused by cognitive dissonance[citation needed].

Astrocytes play a pivotal role in regulating blood flow to and from neurons by creating the blood-brain barrier (BBB). [6] More specifically, these astrocytes are found in close proximity to the ‘end feet’ of blood vessels. These astrocytes aid in the tightening and expansion of the blood vessels to regulate which nutrients make their way to the neurons. [7] The BBB protects the brain from toxins and helps transport things such as oxygen and glucose to the brain.

This system plays a crucial role in the regulation of memory. Studies have suggested that glucose, together with epinephrine from the adrenal medulla have an effect on memory. Although high doses of epinephrine have been proven to impair memory, moderate doses of epinephrine actually enhance memory. [8] This leads to questioning the role that epinephrine has played on the evolution of the genus Homo as well as epinephrine's crucial role during fits of rage. The crucial role that astrocytes play in the formation of muscle memory may also shed light on the beneficial impact of meditation and deep breathing as a method of managing and controlling one's rage.

Some research suggests that an individual is more susceptible to having feelings of depression and anxiety if he or she experiences rage on a frequent basis. Health complications become much worse if an individual represses feelings of rage. [9] John E. Sarno believes that repressed rage in the subconscious leads to physical ailments. Cardiac stress and hypertension are other health complications that will occur when rage is experienced on a regular basis. Psychopathologies such as depression and [10] posttraumatic stress disorder regularly present comorbidly with rage. [11]

Types of therapy Edit

Evidence has shown that behavioral and cognitive therapy techniques have assisted individuals that have difficulties controlling their anger or rage. Role playing and personal study are the two main techniques used to aid individuals with managing rage. Role playing is utilized by angering an individual to the point of rage and then showing them how to control it. [12] Multi-modal cognitive therapy is another treatment used to help individuals cope with anger. This therapy teaches individuals relaxation techniques, problem solving skills, and techniques on response disruption. This type of therapy has proven to be effective for individuals that are highly stressed and are prone to rage. [13]

An emerging business is the rage room, a place where people relieve their stress by destroying objects within a room. [14]

According to psychologists, rage is an in-born behavior that every person exhibits in some form. Rage is often used to denote hostile/affective/reactive aggression. [15] Rage tends to be expressed when a person faces a threat to their pride, position, ability to deceive others, self-deceptive beliefs, or socioeconomic status. [16] This maladaptive conflict management strategy often stems from cognitive dissonance, most simply put, a 'no' where a 'yes' has been.

Cases in which rage is exhibited as a direct response to an individual's deeply held religious beliefs, may directly be related to cognitive dissonance in relation to an individual's ability to manage the terror associated with death and dying. Many researchers have questioned whether Hindu/Buddhist concepts, such as reincarnation and nibbâna, help ease death anxieties. Coleman and Ka-Ying Hui (2012) stated that “according to the Terror Management Theory, a religious concept of an afterlife helps people manage their personal death anxiety” (949). This suggests that rage, in relation to religious ideas, may stem from an inability to manage feelings of terror.

Some psychologists, however, such as Bushman and Anderson, argue that the hostile/predatory dichotomy that is commonly employed in psychology fails to define rage fully, since it is possible for anger to motivate aggression, provoking vengeful behavior, without incorporating the impulsive thinking that is characteristic of rage. They point to individuals or groups such as Seung-Hui Cho in the Virginia Tech massacre or Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold of the Columbine High School massacre, all of whom clearly experienced intense anger and hate, but whose planning (sometimes over periods of years), forethought, and lack of impulsive behavior is readily observable. [17]

Difference Between Agitation and Anxiety

There are ways in which anxiety and agitation are similar. Both cause tension. Both put a person in a more heightened state of arousal. Both make people irritable. Both can also cause the other, where agitation can make someone anxious and anxiety can make someone easily agitated.

But the difference lies in the primary symptoms. A person that is agitated is quick to frustration or anger, often feeling bothered. A person with anxiety tends to have more of a fear response first, with symptoms like nervous energy, rapid heartbeat, and sweating. Their agitation then stems from the discomfort of those experiences.

Whether you're walking away from a goal because the effort it takes to get there isn't a top priority, or you're walking away from a heated dispute because you know nothing productive is going to happen, walking away doesn't mean you're copping out.

In fact, it takes strength to step away from something that isn't working out--especially when you've devoted a lot of resources to a task (or a person). But walking away might show you're willing to act in accordance with your values--even though you might face some ridicule.

Watch the video: Is it physically possible to skate after not skating for 2 years? (May 2022).


  1. JoJok

    License me from this.

  2. Zutaxe

    I congratulate, you were visited by simply excellent thought

  3. Garadin

    The question is interesting, I will also take part in the discussion. Together we can come to the right answer. I'm sure.

Write a message