The Shrink’s Links: The Plutchik Emotion Circumplex

Bringing you the best of mental health and relationship articles on the internet.


Today’s link from the shrink is:

The Plutchik Emotion Circumplex

“How does that make you feel?”

I’m a shrink. I say that a lot. Much of the time when I ask that, the person looks like a deer in the headlights. It’s not that they’re not feeling, it’s just they don’t know what to call it.

The Plutchik Emotion Circumplex can help.

Robert Plutchik’s theory of emotion is, my opinion, the most reasonable classification of emotions there is. He considered there to be eight primary emotions: angerfearsadnessdisgustsurpriseanticipation,trust, and joy. These ‘basic’ emotions are biologically primitive and each is the trigger of behavior with high survival value.

His circumplex model uses the idea of a color wheel. Like colors, primary emotions can be expressed at different intensities and can mix with one another to form different emotions.


Clink here to go to the link

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About Keith R Wilson

I am a licensed mental health counselor and certified alcohol and substance abuse counselor in private practice with more than 30 years experience. What I'm working on now: I'm writing a self help book, titled, The Road to Reconciliation. I recently published a self help book, Constructive Conflict: Building Something Good Out of All Those Arguments. Experimenting with new ideas and characters in fiction under the pen name, S Harry Zade, in the blog, A busy mental health counseling practice in Rochester, NY: Keith Wilson - Counseling. Writing about mental health and relationships at Taking photographs and sharing them at Other Books I've Written Two novels: Intersections and Fate's Janitors: Mopping Up Madness at a Mental Health Clinic
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2 Responses to The Shrink’s Links: The Plutchik Emotion Circumplex

  1. Janice says:

    I’m curious: where would shame fit in this model?

    • Shame is missing! It may be a better world without it, but so is pity, disregard, jealousy, desire, bitterness, humiliation, distrust, embarrassment, gratitude…

      Classifying emotions is a challenging business. Others have tried it and came up with different results. Here’s a site that presents other models.

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