I am very attuned to facial expressions.
- I am a psychotherapist (working with people individually and in groups),
- that has been a way for me to learn, grow, and survive in this world, and
- human beings just are that way, okay?*
I am thinking about facial expressions, this morning, because of an automatic, unhelpful habit:
I am very quick to imagine other people’s facial expressions changing, negatively, in response to me.
- If I am running late, I imagine the faces of the person or people I am going to meet, wearing expressions of disappointment, disapproval, or (eeek!) disgust.
- If I make a mistake, I imagine faces with expressions of disappointment, disapproval or disgust.
- If somebody needs something, and I am unable to provide it, I imagine that person’s face showing disappointment, disgust, or disapproval.
- If I am considering asking for something I need, I imagine people’s faces showing disappointment, disapproval, disgust, or (eeek!) disinterest.
- If I write (or otherwise express) something that I’m not very happy with, I imagine people’s faces showing disapproval, disinterest, disgust, or disappointment.
- If I am ailing or absent, I imagine people’s faces showing disinterest, disappointment, disgust, or disapproval.
- If I get rejected by somebody (for example, the readers for the BlogHer contest), I imagine faces with expressions of disapproval, disinterest, disappointment, or disgust.
- If I am going for something new that requires somebody else’s approval (e.g., an audition, application, or interview), I imagine people’s faces showing disinterest, disapproval, disgust, or disappointment.
- If I am disappointed or angry, and I’m considering telling somebody about that, I imagine their faces turning to expressions of …. well, lots of words beginning with the letter “d.”
Arrrghh!* How much time have I spent in my life, feeling bad about such things?*
I can’t answer that question. But if I could, the results might trigger another “d” word. Say, depression.
Here’s my wish, right now: I would like to break that old habit — of so easily imagining people’s facial expressions changing, negatively.
I don’t want to do that, ever again! It’s not helpful! AND, I’ve done it enough, so far, for several lifetimes.
I’ve served my sentence, for a crime I did NOT commit!
Let me out, Warden, from this unfair prison! NOW!!!*
(pant, pant, pant)
My plan for this post, people, was to show you facial expressions,of many kinds.
So let’s see what Google Images has for the word “warden,” which just popped up, in that previous paragraph.
Hmmmm. Lots of confusing options. What to choose, what to choose?*
How about this one:
(I found that image here)
Hmmmm. I wonder if I’ll get into trouble, using a stock image like that, in this post.
Hey! You know what? I did NOT imagine people with negative expressions on their faces, just now.
Instead, I thought this: if somebody doesn’t like it …. SUE ME!*
What are they going to do, send me to jail?
So … going back to my intent for this post, I will now show you several faces, and ask you to interpret their expressions. Ready to play along?
Facial expression #1:
(Well, I figure this: if there’s going to be any consequences about using this photo, I’m already in trouble, so why not use it again?)
Facial Expression #2:
Facial Expression #3:
Facial Expression #4:
Facial Expression #5:
Facial Expression #6:
Facial Expression #7:
Those last three faces have shown up in previous posts (see here and here). Let’s end this quiz, about facial expressions, with somebody new.
Facial Expression #8:
(I found that image here.)
Who’s that? That’s Eddie Izzard! My son and I have tickets to see him, tonight.*
It’s time to end this post, so I can rest up for activities ahead.
Thanks to those who express themselves (facially and otherwise), to anybody who interprets facial expressions, to people everywhere who are trying to give up bad habits, and to you, especially, for reading today (no matter what expressions you’ve had on your face).
* More questions: what facial expression do you imagine I had, when I wrote that sentence?