The Role of Human Emotions
in Science and Research
By Mark Clain
We have become accustomed to science and emotions being almost contradictory notions. When a person conducts research or experiments, there is always one significant rule — to keep personal emotions aside. However, there have been multiple situations when emotions helped scientists to make enormous breakthroughs. And it doesn’t mean that feelings should prevail upon reasoning while working on research; it signifies that people shouldn’t try to just get rid of emotions because that is impossible in any case. Instead, we should make use of feelings because they give us the sensation of dedication, belonging and empowerment, and this helps to overcome scientific as well as personal challenges.
Emotion is not the first thing that springs to mind when you think about science. We know that each scientific investigation should be unbiased, precise, clear, and based on logic. Scientists gather data, analyze it, and make conclusions which should be objective. It is difficult to turn off a human factor during work, but impartiality is the mainstay of research and the analysis of information.
The scientist's personal emotions don’t mean they have to be subjective during research. It is true that experiments should be done without influence from the human factor which makes us biased. Researchers learn how to analyze, compare, contrast facts like robots or computers. For example, when you are gathering information about the safety of various means of transportation, you should focus on the surveys. And although the car can be your favorite choice, you cannot choose that transport over others just because you personally like it most of all. This example may be simple, but it shows that making conclusions on the basis of research should be emotionless.
When talking about the personal feelings of research scientists, we mean emotional empowerment and motivation. It will be impossible to do any kind of job unless you adore what you do. If each scientist is profoundly interested in his or her activity, it will be noticeable at the result. There are even situations when a smaller group of people can show higher performance than a bigger one. This can happen only if the first group experiences dedication to the idea. Such examples prove that the quality is not always correlated with the number of people. Quality of research is connected with the person’s desire to work. Feelings can serve as a spur for achieving great goals.
All human beings have logic and emotions. We have always been struggling to define which of these two indispensable parts are dominant. While doing some kind of activity, people try to focus on either reasoning or feelings. For example, there is a stereotype that creative people should use their emotions to work in the sphere of art and try to diminish logical thinking. However, it is not possible to create any type of art if focusing on the feelings solely. Think about the hobby of painting. Artists cannot paint ideal architectural pictures if they don’t pay attention to geometry. It means that people should learn how to combine both logic and feelings to reach the highest results.
Emotions are indispensable parts of everyday life, and science is not an exception. When people are researching, they cannot just turn off their feelings. However, it doesn’t mean that the sentimental side need distract them. Indeed, we should make use of sentimentality. Humans created science, and humans have feelings. That is why we cannot just turn off everything that is not based on logic.
If we don’t take close to heart those things that we are working on, we will never reach great success. The role of human emotions helps people feel dedication to the subject of their research. Accomplishing any goals cannot happen in the blink of an eye. It is a long process which is full of challenges, small failures and achievements, many hurdles. Any scientist can be frustrated, angry, or disappointed. Logical thinking will never give the personal motivation and inspiration to get going despite such difficulties. Dedication to research is what makes scientists goal-oriented. If Elon Musk hadn’t believed in his dream, we would never see the successful launching of SpaceX. Dedication and belief are those things which make people push themselves beyond the limits to reach the unreachable.
It has been scientifically proven that positive thinking fosters better results in any activity. And it is no wonder because good emotions give people energy to overcome difficulties. Scientists have to go to great lengths before discovering something valuable. If they don’t believe in their goal, they will give up just after the first failure. Scientific breakthroughs require dedication, perseverance, and motivation. And it is the emotional side which is responsible for these factors. Positive thinking gives people long-term inspiration not only at work but in everyday life. Even when students are doing some research on emotions essays for the university with excitement, the result will be better.
Another proof for the significant role of emotions is that creativity is the main boost for innovations. Most start-ups appear because of human’s desire to improve something. Just think about the appearance of the Apple brand name. Its creation wasn’t based on logic but on spontaneity which refers to the emotional side. Steve Jobs selected the name randomly, and it appeared to be the best choice ever. It is minimalistic and simple. Some people are thinking about an ideal brand name for months, researching the market a lot. However, at this case emotions combined with intuition helped Steve Jobs come up with a creative decision. That is why we have to use our imagination to achieve great results.
When people are working, they need to experience excitement about what they do. Scientific activity is not an exception. Although it is that sphere which requires lots of logical thinking, emotions can complement and even reinforce this activity. Reasoning and feeling shouldn’t contradict each other. If you learn how to make use of these two crucial human factors, you will achieve great success in what you do. Take everything that you are now working on close to heart. This feeling of devotion and personal belonging will give you enough energy to work and succeed.