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Writing Tips: 12 Ways to translate emotions to body language

By Nkem Egenuka on Tue, 22/08/2017 - 17:12

Body Language is the gesture, posture, and facial expression by which a person manifests various physical, mental, or emotional state.

Body language is important because a large percentage of human communication is non-verbal.

Translating Emotions to Written Body Language

Fear – he whimpered, she huddled in the corner, she cringed, she shuddered, she flinched, he shivered, she trembled, his body shook, he wrapped his arms around himself, she rocked back and forth, she tensed her shoulders, her heart thundered in her chest, she shivered, hugging herself.

Pride - he puffed.., squaring his shoulders, raised his chin.

Sadness he cried, sobbed uncontrollably, shaking…

Shame – Slump shoulders, bury face in hands

Shock – stare with wide eyes, hands over mouth, freeze, open mouth

Grief – Shake with sobs, slump, tremble, curl into foetal position…

Happiness – laugh, giggle, he chuckled, hum a tune, dance, jump, spin loosely, she bounced on her toes
she jumped up and down.

Pleasure/Desire – his breath quickened, she tilted her head back, slightly parting his lips, she moaned, he gasped

Anticipation – he paced, rubbing his palms, unable to sit still

Impatience – tap fingers on a surface, tap foot…

Disgust – He flinched, crinkling his nose, turning away, squint his eyes shut, almost gaging

Boredom – yawn, slouch…

Tired/Exhausted - he hunched, she slouched, her shoulders sagged, his shoulders slumped,
she wilted, he went limp…

Confused - she scratched her nose, he scratched his head, he massaged his forehead…

Think - he stroked his beard, she chewed on a cuticle

Anger - her hands squeezed into fists, his hands tightened into fists, she clenched her fists, he balled his fists

Curious/Eager – lean forward, wide eyes, hand on heart, nod, she drew nearer, he leaned closer
she inched forward

Thoughtfulness – Furrow brow, steeple fingers

Playfulness – tickle, smile, eyebrows, nudge, wink






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