What Is Mood? - Definition & Examples

An error occurred trying to load this video.

Try refreshing the page, or contact customer support.

Coming up next: Humor in the Workplace

You're on a roll. Keep up the good work!

Take Quiz Watch Next Lesson
Your next lesson will play in 10 seconds
  • 0:01 Definition of Mood
  • 0:36 Relationship of Affect…
  • 3:10 Lesson Summary
Save Save Save

Want to watch this again later?

Log in or sign up to add this lesson to a Custom Course.

Log in or Sign up

Speed Speed Audio mode

Recommended Lessons and Courses for You

Lesson Transcript
Instructor: Yolanda Williams

Yolanda has taught college Psychology and Ethics, and has a doctorate of philosophy in counselor education and supervision.

Mood refers to a generalized state of feeling. In this lesson, learn about mood, how it differs from affect and emotion, examples of the different types of moods, and more.

Definition of Mood

Mood is a generalized, internal state of feeling. It is closely related to the concepts of affect and emotion.

Imagine that you are meeting up with your friend Jane to watch television and hang out at her house. You notice that Jane has been crying and seems depressed. You ask Jane how she is doing, which causes her to become hostile. She yells at you for implying that something is wrong with her, but she calms down after you apologize. Jane tells you that she has been feeling sad all week. What Jane has just described to you is her mood.

Relationship of Affect and Emotion

We mentioned that mood is closely related to the concepts of affect and emotion. What do we mean by that?

Emotions are intense feelings that are directed at specific objects or situations, while mood is a state of feeling that is less intense than emotions and more generalized. For instance, when a person is mad (emotion), they are usually mad at specific things; however, when a person is feeling anxious (mood), they may be anxious throughout the day no matter what the circumstances.

Affect is your outward expression of emotions and mood. It refers to how others think you feel as evidenced by your behaviors, like crying or laughing. On the other hand, mood is how you actually feel and is internal. A person's affect is not always congruent with their mood. A person can tell you that they are sad but express themselves in ways that do not show sadness, like laughing or smiling. Note that when people speak of moods, they tend to categorize them as either a good or bad mood.

To unlock this lesson you must be a Member.
Create your account

Register to view this lesson

Are you a student or a teacher?

Unlock Your Education

See for yourself why 30 million people use

Become a member and start learning now.
Become a Member  Back
What teachers are saying about
Try it risk-free for 30 days

Earning College Credit

Did you know… We have over 200 college courses that prepare you to earn credit by exam that is accepted by over 1,500 colleges and universities. You can test out of the first two years of college and save thousands off your degree. Anyone can earn credit-by-exam regardless of age or education level.

To learn more, visit our Earning Credit Page

Transferring credit to the school of your choice

Not sure what college you want to attend yet? has thousands of articles about every imaginable degree, area of study and career path that can help you find the school that's right for you.

Create an account to start this course today
Try it risk-free for 30 days!
Create an account