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Emotion Diary Example

Complete this diary over a period of 3 days. During waking hours, write down the various emotions that you experience at preset times during the day. You must write down your emotions at least 7 times each day, and you may select when those times will be. If you want, you may use Izard's Differential Emotions Scale (which is: anger, contempt, disgust, distress, fear, guilt, interest, joy, shame, and surprise) or any other emotion scale you choose to define your emotions. After the end of the three days, compute the frequency of each emotion experienced across the total reporting period. (For example, anger=1, joy=2, sad=1, anxious=3, etc.) After completing your Diary of Emotions, which physiological (internal and expressive body changes) and cognitive (specific thoughts occurring during an emotion) components of emotions did you recognize in your own experience? Explain your answer.

Emotions recorded were (see attached)

How do I explain the emotions using the physiological and cognitive components with these experiences? I am clueless.


Solution Preview

Physiological components of emotion would include all involuntary physical responses to your emotional experience. This would include all parasympathetic and sympathetic nervous system responses such as heart rate, perspiration, pupil dilation/constriction, increased or decreased muscle tone, energy or fatigue (i.e. excitement or relaxation), blood flow to skin surface (i.e. blushing or blanching), blood pressure changes, hormonal changes, piloerection ('hair standing on end') and etc. Of course, you are consciously aware of only some of these changes but often you can pick up on many of them if you direct your attention to your physical state. Other physiological or somatic responses include facial (e.g. furrowed brow accompanying frustration or confusion), oral (e.g. gasp accompanying surprise) and ...

Solution Summary

Detailed three paragraph discussion of the nature of emotions: physiological, cognitive and experiential components. Particular reference to the Izard Differential Emotions Scale and how to use a diary to record and observe emotional experience.