Emotion Thesaurus Entry: Happiness/Joy

We’re placing these two emotions together as they share many reactions, but the ‘range’ of feeling can be more intense with pure joy, depending on the level being experienced.

• Noticing the small things around them (smelling the roses, so to speak)
• showing affection—hugging, touching, etc
• rapping the fingers lightly (as if to internal music) on a leg or other surface
• swinging/tapping a foot to an easy beat
• showing patience
• bouncing on one’s toes
• rapid speaking
• a feeling of breathlessness
• tingling hands
• a need to share the intense feeling with others
• lightness in the limbs
• an energetic walk, quick movements, no hesitation
• a desire to be with loved ones or friends
• fearlessness
• risk taking…

Win your readers’ hearts by tailoring your character’s emotional responses so they’re compelling, credible, and realistic.

If you struggle with writing emotions like so many writers do, you’ll be happy to know that this sample has been expanded into book form. The full list of physical, internal, and mental cues for this and 74 other emotions can be found in The Emotion Thesaurus: A Writer’s Guide to Character Expression. For more information on this bestselling book and where it can be found, please visit our bookstore.

And the news gets better: we’ve added 15 entries to this collection, including grief, lust, and self-loathing. To access these, simply visit our online library at One Stop For Writers. There, you’ll find all 90 entries from our popular Emotion Thesaurus, which have been updated and enhanced to provide even greater value. Users also enjoy the flexibility of cross-referenced material for easy searchability across all of our completed thesaurus collections. Interested in viewing a sample? Register for free at One Stop, and see what this innovative online library can do for your storytelling.


Angela is an international speaker and bestselling author who loves to travel, teach, empower writers, and pay-it-forward. She also enjoys dreaming up new tools and resources for One Stop For Writers, a library built to help writers elevate their storytelling.
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One Response to Emotion Thesaurus Entry: Happiness/Joy

  1. Scratchy Paw says:

    My “master” is always happy with me. Now I have lots of ways to blog about it. Thank you.

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