In one of my trainings, after an extremely emotional speech by one of the participants, another woman said during the evaluation round: Emotions can never be wrong. Emotions can never be wrong. What a great tweet! And I couldn’t agree more.
In the first 5,828 speeches I had the privilege to experience in my public speaking trainings across the world, emotional transparency was never put on the plusplus side. Meaning, emotional transparency was never perceived as negative. It was always positive for the audience. But judge for yourself.
Above you see a list of 40 emotions. Below I apply some of them in random phrases. I offer you A) a neutral and B) a more emotional version:
A) I didn’t always get along with my mom.
B) Sometimes I was angry with my mom.
A) I remember this noise making boy next door.
B) I was so annoyed by the whistling boy next door.
A) It wasn’t easy for my girlfriend, when I broke up with her.
B) I hurt her so much.
A) There are things in life you shouldn’t do.
B) When I look back at some things I did when I was young, I feel ashamed.
A) Those were challenging times when I finished university and started to work.
B) When I finished university and started to work, I felt depressed for a couple of weeks.
A) When I was a teenager I wished my parents owned a big house and a big car.
B) When I saw the rich kids, I was so envious.
A) She was there for me when I was down.
B) When I was down, she made me feel motivated, inspired, loved.
A or B – what connects more with you? Can emotions ever be wrong? Will emotions ever be wrong? At least in my public speaking trainings, I haven’t met any person yet who was too emotionally transparent. Based on all those experiences, my common sense tells me, [if you’re NOT a preacher of anger and hatred,] emotions can never be wrong.
Be more transparent – you’ll always connect more with your audience.