Take a look at Laura watching one of her favourite TV ads. How can we tell she’s enjoying it?
She’s smiling, not just in a quick and fleeting way, but with a sustained and relaxed smile on her lips.
When people are experiencing pleasure we see the eyes widen. Laura is looking at the screen with wide open eyes – she wants to take in as much information as she can.
She’s looking intently at the screen, something we can see from the focus in her eyes. This is not something which she is just mildly interested in. It has her full attention.
When someone is happy, or experiencing pleasure, we also see body movement. As Laura watches the screen, her eyes follow the action whilst her head moves slightly and gently back and forth.
Her smile, which is broad to begin with, becomes even broader as she enjoys what she sees. The key point to look out for here is the long duration of the steady smile. It’s not a fake smile being sustained to make an impression or to be polite; it’s a real smile sustained because she is experiencing real enjoyment.
Signs to note
- a wide sustained smile
- a focused gaze
- she follows the action on the screen with her eyes
To see stills on this emotion visit our website:
By Dr. John Habershon
Dr John Habershon has spent many hundreds of hours conducting in-depth interviews during his career in consumer and social research. Over the last eight years he has analysed the nonverbal responses captured on video on a wide range of topics, ranging from favorite products and advertising on TV, to bereavement and stress at work. He became involved in work for those on the autism spectrum through friends with Asperger’s in the family and has created Emotions Reader, (https://vimeo.com/ondemand/readingemotionssystem) an interactive program with quizzes to help users identify facial expressions. John has a long standing interest in understanding emotions, having gained his PhD on the psychological effects of unemployment at Imperial College, London University. He has been elected a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts. http://www.momentumresearch.co.uk/