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People Who Cry During Movies Are Emotionally More Powerful

A lot of people believe that crying during movies is nothing but a sign of weakness. Well, guess what, that thought couldn’t be more wrong! Paul J. Zak, a neuroeconomist at Claremont Graduate University, conducted a study in which he affirms that those who cry during movies are more empathetic, they know how to handle their emotions better, and they are stronger when facing daily challenges.

Hear ye silently weeping souls during movie scenes of characters finding their pet dolphins or dying of some affliction. Have you been subjected to judging looks, smirks and even pointed coughing?

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Roll your eyes and ignore them, because you’re most likely an awesome person and internally stronger than they probably are. 

1. They experience life fully.

Oxytocin is related to trustworthiness between people. Those who have more trust in others, have high levels of this neurotransmitter in their body, and often forge deeper relationships. They recognize the value of appreciating those around them. They also live more fully than those who have trust issues and feel distressed by the relationships they establish with others.

2. They realize that these stories are fictional, but they can’t keep their feelings inside.

Zak says that cognitively speaking, although they know that the movie is not real and the story they see on the screen is fictional, it’s still inevitable that they will cry when they see a very emotional scene.

3. Oxytocin is the one to blame.

This hormone acts as a neurotransmitter and it’s responsible for what we feel when we witness a touching scene. We connect a story, to a feeling, and, later, to positive action. That is, this hormone makes us more empathetic and makes us have a much more receptive attitude toward the world, in addition to making us feel happier.

4. These people are not afraid to express their emotions.

People who are not embarrassed to cry during movies are, in fact, more mentally tough than those who try to hide their tears. That is because they are brave enough to express their true feelings. They are not afraid of being judged or criticized. This, according to Zak himself, is also an effect of oxytocin, since, by empathizing with those around them, human beings are not afraid to stand up for what they think is right.

5. The power of tears

The findings made by Zak also show that those who cry at movies know about the healing power of tears. Crying makes us connect with other people, we learn to see that there are circumstances that can positively and negatively affect our environment and that we are susceptible to it.

6. They don’t run away from emotions.

The people who cry during movies also assume that it’s important to maintain a certain perspective on what happens to us and that sometimes it’s necessary to take a moment to cry. This allows them to achieve greater emotional stability than those who hide their feelings.

7. They don’t care about gender roles or expectations.

We’ve all heard the saying: “Big boys don’t cry.” Most boys learn from an early age that crying in public will make them look weak. However, this is nothing but a nonsense limitation. Boys and girls, when they’re young, don’t differ at how much they cry. It’s a human response that is not related to any particular gender, and that is known to those who are not afraid to do it openly. They don’t fear being judged by those who believe that crying is a female trait.


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Crying during movies is part of the experience of totally immersing yourself in a movie. In another study, researchers looked at the illusion of having two bodies at the same time during a movie. They say that although we know that the movie is not real, more perceptive people are simultaneously aware of being inside the film and outside of it. This conflict between being both here in the seat of the theater and also participating in the movie experience of the actors can cause viewers to experience “dizziness and nausea, an unsettling yet – to a certain degree – pleasurable feeling, which is significantly intensified in media environments such as 3-D films and virtual reality.”

Have you ever cried while watching any movies? Do you feel embarrassed if you cry in between?

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