Are you angry? Good! Let the anger flow through you! Because as social psychologist Joseph Paul Forgas explains in Quartz, there are psychological benefits to a bad mood.
Photo by Jeremy Wong
There are the well-known and long-romanticised effects: Sadness inspires great art, and it helps us appreciate others’ sadness. But Dr Forgas points out some more quotidian and practical benefits:
- Bad moods improve recall memory.
- While the theory that clinically depressed people have more accurate self-assessments is controversial and limited, a mild bad mood can improve assessments of others.
- People in a bad mood try harder (and perform better) at tough mental tasks.
- Bad moods can make people more concerned with fairness.
So when things are actually bad, consider feeling bad! And then use that feeling for something productive.