The Pan-Affect Chart is a useful overview of all of the main affects (i.e. pleasant or unpleasant sensations) that we experience throughout our lives, and which motivate most of our actions and decisions. They are grouped by category, with pleasant sensations written in green text and unpleasant ones in red. This information was excerpted from the free book The Sudist Way, which contains a more detailed version of this chart. Suggestions and feedback are welcome below.
Physical activity drivers
Pleasant physical activity The joy of being physically active, especially when we feel restless or energetic. The joy of increasing our power and mastery over our bodies and our physical environment.
Physical restlessness The uncomfortable urge to move and be active, especially when we are resting
Physical effort The discomfort of pushing our muscles and joints to do a significant amount of physical work
Physically resting The joy of resting our bodies, especially when we are tired, sick, or injured
Physical fatigue The uncomfortable desire to rest or sleep, especially when we are physically active
Pleasant core warming The joy of our body core receiving warmth from our environment, especially when our core is cold
Low core temperature The discomfort of our body core feeling cold
Pleasant core cooling The joy of our body core being cooled by our environment, especially when our core is too warm
High core temperature The discomfort of our body core feeling too hot
Pleasant surface warming The joy of our skin receiving warmth from our environment, especially when it is cold
Low surface temperature The discomfort when our skin feels cold
Pleasant surface cooling The joy of our skin being cooled by our environment, especially when it is too warm
High surface temperature The discomfort when our skin feels too hot
Pleasant scents and flavours The pleasure of smelling or tasting edible foods and beverages
Unpleasant scents and flavours The displeasure of tasting bitter, sour, or otherwise off-putting flavours. The displeasure of smelling rancid or unpleasantly pungent things.
Satisfying hunger The joy of feeling full and satisfied after eating a snack or meal
Hunger pains The painful desire to eat, which encourages us to provide nutrients to our body
Stomach overfulness The discomfort of having consumed too much food or fluids
Quenching thirst The pleasure of drinking fluids, especially when we are thirsty
Thirst pains The painful desire to drink, which helps hydrate our body
Stomach overfulness The discomfort of having consumed too much food or fluids
Breathing The pleasure of breathing in clean air, especially when we are out of breath
Shortness of breath The painful desire to breathe clean air, especially when we are short of breath
Urinating or defecating The pleasure of expelling body waste, especially when we urgently need to urinate or defecate
Urge to urinate or defecate The painful desire to urinate or defecate, especially when our bladder or rectum is full
Relief from expelling irritants The pleasant relief of expelling various irritants or toxins, such as by coughing, sneezing, diarrhea or vomiting
Nausea and indigestion The discomfort of nausea and indigestion from consuming spoiled food or inedible substances, or from being exposed to certain pathogens
Urge to cough The unpleasant desire to cough, usually due to inhaling dust, smoke, chemicals, or other irritants
Urge to sneeze The unpleasant desire to sneeze, usually due to dust, chemicals, or other irritants in the nasal passages
Urge to gag The unpleasant desire to gag, usually due to large foreign objects nearing the back of the throat
Other physical safety drivers
Headaches Discomfort in various areas of the neck or head, which may be caused by infection, increased pressure, or loss of blood flow
Musculoskeletal pains The various pains that occur in bones, muscles, tendons, ligaments and joints. Excludes physical effort and fatigue, which are listed as separate feelings.
Unpleasant sounds The discomfort of hearing loud or squealing sounds
Unpleasant brightness The discomfort of staring at intensely bright lights
Other surface pains The various other pains we may feel on the surface of the body, including cuts, scratches, bruises, rashes, and being pinched or slapped. Other physical pains Other physical pains not already described, including chest pain, earaches, toothaches, and kidney stone pain
Scratching an itch The pleasure of scratching an itchy area of the body, whose primary purpose is to rid our bodies of insects and parasites such as lice and ticks, and other surface irritants
Itching The discomfort of feeling itchy
Mental activity drivers
Pleasant mental stimulation The joy of discovering new information about people, places, and things, and how they all fit together. The joy of acquiring and mastering cognitive skills.
Mirth The joy of discovering surprising incongruence, which can lead to amusement and laughter
Boredom The displeasure of having too little mental stimulation or uninteresting mental stimulation
Curiosity The painful desire to find out about something specific we do not yet know
Mental effort The discomfort of exerting significant mental effort, such as learning or analyzing large or complex amounts of information
Mentally resting The joy of resting our minds, especially when we are mentally tired or overworked
Mental fatigue The uncomfortable desire to rest our minds, especially when we are mentally active
Pleasant touch The joy of non-sexual touch, which helps us bond with adults, children, and even animals. Includes hugging, massaging, and play fighting.
Longing for touch The painful desire for non-sexual physical contact, to strengthen our bonds with other people and living creatures
Caring for others The joy of giving our love and affection to others, and of taking care of and protecting others
Compassion The painful desire to prevent or relieve someone else's suffering
Feeling cared for The joy of receiving love and care from others, of feeling cared for and protected by others
Feeling uncared for The discomfort of not feeling liked, supported or loved enough by family, friends, our partners, or others
Retribution The pleasure of attacking someone or something we are angry at, of taking vengeance on them, or of seeing them receive retribution in some other way
Anger The painful desire for retribution against someone or something that is causing us to suffer against our will. Includes irritation, annoyance, and rage.
Sexual attraction The joy of assessing the qualities of sexually desirable mates, or of being viewed as sexually desirable
Sexual curiosity The painful desire to assess the qualities of sexually desirable mates, or to be viewed as sexually desirable
Sexual activity The pleasure of sexual touch, intercourse and orgasm
Sexual desire The painful hunger for sexual activity and orgasm
Sexual overactivity The pain that can occur if sexual stimulation continues after lengthy sexual activity or orgasm
Being in love The joy of being passionately in love with someone
Lovesickness A painful yearning to connect with someone whom we’ve fallen in love with
Satisfaction with self The joy of meeting or exceeding our own expectations. Also, the joy of seeing people we closely identify with meeting or exceeding our expectations.
Disappointment in self The pain of not meeting our own expectations. Also, the pain of those we closely identify with not meeting our expectations. Includes guilt, shame, and embarrassment.
Satisfaction with others The joy of people we do not closely identify with meeting or exceeding our expectations. Also, the joy of things other than people (such as weather or good fortune) meeting or exceeding our expectations.
Disappointment in others The pain of people we do not closely identify with not meeting our expectations. Also, the painful disappointment of things other than people (such as bad weather or ill fortune) not meeting our expectations.
Joy Joy that is not tied to any specific human drive
Dysphoria Pain that is not tied to any specific human drive
Imagination drivers (past, present, future)
Remembering pleasure The joy of recalling pleasant memories of the past
Remembering pain The pain of recalling unpleasant memories of the past
Imagining pleasure The joy of fantasizing about pleasant alternate realities. Includes pleasant daydreams and night dreams.
Imagining pain The pain of imagining unpleasant alternate realities. Includes unpleasant daydreams and nightmares.
Anticipating pleasure The joy of anticipating pleasant things yet to come. Includes excitement and joyful hope.
Anticipating pain The painful fear and worry about things yet to come. Includes anxiety and dread.
v1.2. Reproduction (in whole or in part) of this chart must attribute sudism.org as the source.
The free book The Sudist Way contains a more in-depth version of this chart.
This is a great framework for emotion contemplation! I’ve been using this online emotion wheel I coded and it works great, but I’m going to try to implement this sudism chart in my practice!! Thank you. 🙏🏾
Hi Pat. Thanks for the positive feedback! May I ask what kind of practice you run? You can use this chart as much as you’d like. However, if you reproduce it entirely in your app, website, or other medium, please include a brief attribution and link to sudism.org alongside the chart. I hope it serves you well and any suggestions for improvement are welcome. Take care.
Hi! I meant in my own personal practice, as in for myself, not as a professional. The way that you’ve broken down the categories, with their respective pleasant and unpleasant sensations, is very enlightening. If at any point I figure out a way to implement this in my emotion wheel app, I would go beyond just providing attribution and link. Thanks again!!
I’m glad you find it useful! I spent quite a bit of time working on this chart and it has gone through several iterations. If you ever have any question or suggestions about it, please don’t hesitate to reach out. Also, my forthcoming free book “The Sudist Way” provides more detail on each of the feelings described in this chart–I can send you a copy if you’re interested. Take care.