Saturday, February 11, 2012

Negotiation Nonverbal Communication Secret # 1021:
Jeremy Lin's Fiero

Jeremy Lin's 38 point effort against the Lakers was more than enough to propel the Knicks to a win last night (92-85 in NY). Lin even outperformed Kobe Bryant. The point guard seems to have come out of nowhere.... er, ah, I mean ..... Harvard. In his first three starts in the NBA, Lin has scored 89 points. A Harvard grad? Who received no scholarship offers out of high school? Not drafted out of college? Yes, I'd say he has reason to celebrate. Lin is expressing "Fiero" in this image from yesterday's game. 

Fiero is a term coined by Italian Psychologist Isabella Poggi. It describes an emotional state experienced when an extreme obstacle is overcome - whether it is physical, job-related, intellectual, relationship-related, etc. - regardless of the origin of the problem. Unfortunately, there is a relative lack of positive emotional states/adjectives in English when compared with other languages. Thank you Isabella.

It is intriguing how the body language for fiero, is similar - but not identical to that of anger - as well as extreme physical pain. Dramatic arm motion, yelling, a mouth appearance similar to a pain expression, closed eyelids - are all consistent with Fiero. A few seconds-minutes after fiero, the emotion is replaced by classic nonverbal displays of joy-happiness (see below for a sincere smile displayed a few seconds later).

The Knicks play the Minnesota Timberwolves tonight.

Fiero Jeremy. Fiero.