03
Nov
09

Is it good to be grumpy?

bad moodNext time someone tells you to “smile”, “snap out of it” or “chill out” point them in the direction of this research. Researchers in Australia have found that negativity boosts judgement, memory and communication.

“Whereas positive mood seems to promote creativity, flexibility, cooperation, and reliance on mental shortcuts, negative moods trigger more attentive, careful thinking paying greater attention to the external world,” says Professor Forgas, author of the study.

Does being negative make you wiser? Is there such a thing as being too happy? And what’s your judgement like when your in a bad mood?


21 Responses to “Is it good to be grumpy?”


  1. 1 patti in cape coral
    November 3, 2009 at 21:05

    I don’t know about negativity making you wiser, but when I am angry or sad I really attack the keyboard at work, talk less, and am generally more productive than when I am in a good mood. Nobody at work likes me like that, though.

    • 2 Alice SR
      November 3, 2009 at 23:41

      I do not believe that it is the negative moods which stimulate a greater sense of communication or concentration, it is more to do with the fact that our negative moods makes us respond to matters at a more deepened and serious manner as feel durress and pressure which are good push factors that help people perform better occassionally.

  2. November 3, 2009 at 22:53

    Grumpiness decreases effectivity. That’s what I found during my studies and it closes doors when at work. The ground mood is set before each talk with someone else. I can either be grumpy to them and needn’t think about why I didn’t get what I wanted, or, I can walk in with a well enough mood and increase the overall mood. The same thing with oral exams at the university. You set the mood and you set your chances for a better grade. Even the assistants of the professors said so and gave us students that hint. It worked.

    By all means, be grumpy when alone, if you like it, but be nice and not grumpy among others; not because of courtesy, but because of self interest.

  3. 4 No Thanks
    November 3, 2009 at 23:02

    I suppose it’s debatable whether its ‘good’ or not but I can’t see how it can be avoided.

  4. 5 Bert
    November 4, 2009 at 02:40

    Heavens no. Being grumpy is awfully uncomfortable. No fun at all. When I feel grumpy, there’s something nagging at me that I don’t like, so it distracts. Hardly a catalyst for clear thinking.

    Maybe it’s different for those down under, who must stand on their heads, though.

    Or maybe they are saying that people who are thinking hard LOOK like they’re grumpy.

  5. 6 steve
    November 4, 2009 at 03:29

    I’ve read that depressed people have a more realistic view of the world, but that’s still no way to live.

  6. 7 Roy, Washington DC
    November 4, 2009 at 03:39

    I will admit that I’m not always sunshine and rainbows, but I’ll let my work evaluations speak for themselves.

    This study vindicates me!

  7. 8 Tom K in Mpls
    November 4, 2009 at 06:30

    I would think it’s obvious. A common ‘happy’ saying is ‘not a care in the world’. Now, how much thinking do you do when you don’t have a care. Probably no more than some daydreaming. Old sayings are a valuable source of info.

    Now cynics/realists like me, we think a lot.

  8. 9 Ronald Almeida
    November 4, 2009 at 07:58

    It is always good to be honest to oneself and those around. Nothing repressed ever blooms well. Regardless of what the experts claim, one must know oneself, nobody else can.

  9. November 4, 2009 at 08:03

    For me, i make the worst decisions when i am angry. I try hard not to get angry but some things just cant be helped.

  10. 11 scmehta
    November 4, 2009 at 08:32

    It’s bad to be grumpy, that is being peevish, sulky or bad-tempered, and to have a negative mood or bent of mind is worse; but, it does happen with everyone, sometime or the other. However, anyone, who claims to have a positive/happy mood always, is either a liar or an utterly selfish person; How can one remain insulated or untouched from the miseries around the world, and how can you help not being concerned and sad? You cannot be happy in a sad immediate-environ; but, you may feel sad in a happy immediate-environ, if you’re concerned about the others’ environs

  11. 12 Audrius Kviliunas
    November 4, 2009 at 09:26

    When you feel very bad you will do nothing and when you feel very good you will do nothing.When you partly feel good or bad you have aim to move towards very good feelings and emotions and this is essential moving force all of us.Only partly good emotions inside us move more quickly then partly bad emotions towards aim.Invalid peoples have less very good feelings and emotions as have less aims.When somebody in very bad situation have quickly problem solving he have it not from very bad situation but from earlier collected information in his brains when he feel good.

  12. 13 Kevin PE
    November 4, 2009 at 10:54

    It is all a matter of reference. If one was never grumpy, sad, concerned etc, how would you know that you were happy?
    Then again moods are probably a rearrangement of chemicals in the brain. Certain foods and activities, good and bad stimuli, even the weather can alter the balance. Reading the posts on the blog always cheers me though.

  13. 14 ARTHUR NJUGUNA
    November 4, 2009 at 12:21

    I have been accused of being grumpy when I concentrate on a task but this is purly the perception of the witness who observe me. I am not a musician but I think I am musical enough to dance with the elements and parterns surrounding a given task. I might be defensive whenever anyone wants to end my mental jig before I am through. In all other cases I like being cheerful though there are times I have my downs and need a lift up from those around me.
    I don’t know whether I am selfish by disliking people who would spend hours grooming themselves until they are cute enough and only end up looking sulky and grumpy when in a happy atmosphere but I do . You wonder why Someone is attracting you and at the same time it is as if they are telling you ‘bozz off. I am feeling miserable and its none of your business. Do you understand’. Most of the time I don’t want to understand because I am the witness without and not within that given beauty.

  14. 15 Bob in Queensland
    November 4, 2009 at 12:55

    Based on my mood today, I probably have the best judgment, memory and communication skills on the blog.

    Can somebody please explain this to my wife though?

  15. 16 gary
    November 4, 2009 at 14:17

    I try not to be one or to be around grumpy people. If my intellectual acuity, which isn’t all that sharp anyway, suffers a bit, so what? I’ve never given in to the thought that I’m indispensable to anyone at all, even myself. When a loved one dies, folks grieve for their loss, not for the dead person’s loss. I’ve thus resolved to not worry even about days; but to be as happy as possible every second.
    g

  16. 17 Ann
    November 4, 2009 at 15:05

    My house is never cleaner than when I’m in a bad mood or worried about something. Scrubbing the oven is a real favourite when I’m really cross! 🙂

  17. 18 Jennifer
    November 4, 2009 at 17:47

    Re: Does being negative make you wiser? Is there such a thing as being too happy? And what’s your judgement like when your in a bad mood?

    You can’t always tiptoe through the tulips. Maybe being negative gives you the ability to consider things more realistically.

    When I am in a bad mood I am much more productive; task oriented.

  18. 19 Ronald Almeida
    November 5, 2009 at 08:51

    If the situation is unbearable learn and practice meditation. I have found it to be the best remedy.

  19. 20 Ibrahim in UK
    November 6, 2009 at 11:07

    Well that’s ruined it now. I’ve become all happy at the news it’s good to be grumpy …

  20. 21 MIP...Derby
    November 16, 2009 at 23:33

    It is real good news too be grumpy, I like being grumpy, as i hate my work, my boss is younger than i am and basically dont know his arse to his elbow. My partner need a medal for putting up with me… my 4 month old daughter hasnt quite grasp the concept of being grumpy, but no doubt she’ll learn…


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