Emotions express our values. They help us to grant significance to events and ideas. It is how we know what we consider important ().
Without emotions, all options seem equally valid and we couldn’t make decisions ().
Emotion enhances memory. If it is important enough to be emotional about, it is important enough to remember with greater clarity and detail (See).
If you lacked empathy, you would be like a psychopath without the charm. At least psychopaths can switch on empathy when they need to be charming. A psychopath uses this charm to manipulate others ().
Without emotions, you would be a morally-relativistic, indecisive, cold-blooded, charmless person with bland memories and incapable of manipulation. In other words, you couldn’t even get by on your wits.
It is equally important not to get swept away by our emotions and commit crimes of passion. Today, we have many techniques to help us find a balance: mindfulness, mindfulness-based cognitive therapy, anger management classes, just to name a few.
©2016 Stephen L. Martin
Painting: The Cliffs by Thomas Hart Benton