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You’ll get angry when I tell you this

By on November 8, 2014

Make an angry face. Really, make an angry face right now and look in the mirror. If you’re not near a mirror, reach up and feel your face. You’ll feel our brows are pulled down, cheekbones raised, lips pursed, perhaps revealing a snarl…

Some argue that the human ‘anger face’ is designed to protect the eyes from damage in a violent confrontation, and the fragile human jaw from being damages or broken.

But recent research from Australia suggests that another important evolutionary purpose of the anger face is communication. By showing our angry face to others we remind them of the potential implications of not giving us our own way!

The researchers showed ‘photoshopped’ pictures of faces to introduce one element of anger, for example they might show the same face one with an artificially lowered brow and one with a raised brow. Neither picture looked angry because the rest of the anger markers were not there. But subjects who viewed the pictures described the face with the single anger marker (for example the lowered brow) as being ‘more powerful’ than the other.

Application to hypnosis

Our hypnosis clients are often concerned about how their emotions make them feel. This is natural enough. But what we can easily forget is that these emotions, if you feel them at an appropriate time, send powerful unconscious messages to those around us. Getting angry makes us appear (unconsciously) more powerful to those around us.

In NLP this is called a ‘context reframe’ meaning it is not the anger that is the problem, it is perhaps the contexts in which the anger is shown. For example it might not be appropriate to get angry with your small child who accidentally spilled their juice, but getting angry with your contractor who has failed to show up for the third day running might be very appropriate.

So don’t try to rob your hypnosis clients of their emotional range, emotional control means knowing when and how to use these natural gifts! next time you get really mad, take a look in the mirror. See the lowered brow, the thinned lips and the flared nostrils? That’s what social scientists call the “anger face,” and it appears to be part of our basic biology as humans. Each element makes you look physically stronger and more formidable — ScienceDaily

Credit: © Vera Kuttelvaserova / Fotolia

The CafeHypno Editorial Team Sarah Carson, Jess Marion, Shawn Carson

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