10 Psychological Effects of Music

4. Happy faces

 

Seeing happy and joyful expressions on someone else’s face can be the result of accurate perception. However, it can also partly be a result of listening to music. Yes, a result of music. Music can influence your own ability to interpret other people’s emotions.

Loges and colleagues investigated this in 2009 and found that a “shock therapy” with joyful music had an effect on how people perceive the emotions of others. And vice versa, unfortunately, the effect worked even after shock therapy from the music. The greatest effect of music was found when assessing “neutral” faces. Survey participants who heard happy music then rate others’ neutral faces as “happy,” and participants who heard sad music rate those same neutral faces as “sad.” So, where we would normally have found a lack of emotions, after a happy tune we see more positive emotions. So think twice before trying to read emotions from someone’s face, because before you know it Celine Dion has you by the nose…

 

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