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Time to get emotional! Are you excited to learn how to express your feelings? How well can you express your emotions in Spanish? Can you say “happy” in Spanish? What about “sad”?
Many beginner language learners get stuck using the same words over and over to describe how they feel. Resorting to only using basic Spanish phrases to answer questions. Or, you may know some of the basics — like “happy” in Spanish. But what you really wanted to say was “ecstatic”, “joyful”, or “delighted”.
It can get a bit boring to express yourself with the same phrases all the time. Learning synonyms and antonyms can help grow your vocabulary fast and expand your speech. It’s always amazing when you can have a deeper conversation because you actually know the right words you want to say!
So, here’s a list of emotional words, feelings, and moods to get you started. Don’t be overwhelmed by the lists — many of these words are cognates! That means they’re very similar to English and you’ll easily recognize them. Be on the lookout for those words, as they’ll be the ones you can memorise fastest.
How to Express Your Emotions in Spanish
Spanish is known for being expressive, warm, open, and passionate. So there’s no shortage of ways to express your feelings, or sentimientos. I’ve divided these words by the mood (humor) or emotion (emociones), so you can work on memorising them in groups of synonyms or related feelings.
For all these words, be mindful of the word gender in Spanish. You’ll match the ending to your own gender, or the person you’re talking about. As a rule, words ending in -o are masculine, and words ending in -a are feminine.
Want to learn Spanish fast? Then check out our favourite Spanish course, SpanishPod101. It includes fun, easy to follow lessons on describing your feelings in Spanish.
“Happy” in Spanish and Other Positive Feelings
“Happy” in Spanish is feliz, although it’s used less than you would expect. Usually, to describe happiness, you’ll hear contento / contenta (“content”). Or, you could say “delighted” in Spanish with encantado / encantada. And to feel “excited” in Spanish, it’s emocionado / emocionada.
If you’re happy about some news you heard, you would use the verb alegrarse. It’s a reflexive Spanish verb meaning “rejoice”. So, in the first person, you use the reflexive pronoun to say Me alegro, “I’m glad”.
Here’s some more cheery feelings in Spanish:
- Ecstatic – Extático / Extática
- Joyful – Alegre
- Optimistic – Optimisto / Optimista
- Relaxed – Relajado / Relajada
- Calm – Tranquilo / Tranquila
- Good – Bien
- Great, Wonderful – Maravilloso / Maravillosa
- Fantastic – Fabuloso / Fabulosa
“Angry” in Spanish and Intense Negative Feelings
Feeling mad? Sometimes you just need to let off steam, vent and have your emotions heard. So you need to know the right words!
“Angry” in Spanish is enfadado / enfadada in Spain, or enojado / enojada in Latin America.
Maybe you’re beyond mad, and feeling furioso / furiosa (“furious”).
If someone’s left you feeling repulsed, “disgust” in Spanish is el asco or la repugnancia. As an adjective, “disgusted” in Spanish is disgustado, asqueado, or repugnado. Which one should you use? Disgustado is the most straightforward translation, also meaning “disgruntled” or “displeased”. Asqueado is more like “It sickens me.” And repugnado should seem familiar — it’s closest to “repugnant” in English.
Lastly, if you’re feeling the green-eyed monster creeping up in your feelings, then you can say “jealous” in Spanish with celoso / celosa.
Here’s a few more negative sentiments:
- Crazy – Loco / Loca
- Annoyed – Irritado / Irritada
- Aggravated – Agravado / Agravada
- Infuriating – Exasperante
“Sad” in Spanish and Other Gloomy Feelings
Everyone feels sad sometimes. If you’re feeling down, you can say “sad” in Spanish with triste. This one is gender-neutral, so that simplifies how to use it.
If you’re travelling abroad, sometimes you can feel intense bouts of homesickness and sadness. If you’re feeling more intense sad emotions, you can say “depressed” in Spanish with deprimido / deprimida. “Anxious” in Spanish is ansioso / ansiosa.
Other ways to express feeling blue:
- Unhappy – Infeliz
- Gloomy – Melancólico / Melancólica
- Downcast – Alicaído / Alicaída
- Bad – Mal
- Lonely – Solitario / Solitaria
- Embarrassed – Avergonzado / Avergonzada
“Afraid” in Spanish and Words To Discuss Your Nerves
Did you go see a scary movie, and it left you feeling skittish? “Afraid” in Spanish is miedo, and in Spanish you “have fear” — so it’s tengo miedo instead of estoy miedo. If someone shocked you, you can say you’re “surprised” in Spanish with sorprendido / sorprendida.
If someone startled you, though, you may shout ¡Hostia! or ¡Ay Dios mío! The first is a reference to the holy communion host in the Catholic church and a very common slang exclamation. ¡Ay Dios mío! is, of course, “Oh my God!”
A few more to know:
- Frightened – Asustado / Asustada
- Nervous – Nervioso / Nerviosa
- Worried – Preocupado / Preocupada
- Confused – Confundido / Confundida
These words often remind me of Harry Potter spells (which came from Spanish or other languages). Especially confundido, which is like the confundus charm often used in the series. (That one, by the way, is Portuguese. But it can still help you remember it in Spanish if you like Harry Potter!)
“Bored”, “Tired” and Other Lukewarm Feelings in Spanish
“Bored” in Spanish is aburrido / aburrida. When talking about how you feel, you use estoy aburrido. But when talking about things that are boring, you use the permanent “to be” verb ser.
If you’re feeling tired, that’s cansado / cansada in Spanish. And if you’re under the weather, use enfermo / enferma.
Other lukewarm emotions:
- No matter, not important – No importa
- Okay – Regular
- Unwell – Indispuesto / Indispuesta
- Lousy – Malísimo / Malísima
- Groggy – Mareado / Mareada
- Weird – Extraño / Extraña
“Love” in Spanish and Passionate Emotions
There are many ways to be romantic in Spanish! “Love” is amor, but “in love” in Spanish is enamorado / enamorada. So to tell someone you’re currently head-over-heels in love, use “Estoy enamorado.”
Here are some Spanish passion words to learn:
- Emotional – Emocional
- Passionate – Apasionado / Apasionada
- Energetic – Enérgico / Enérgica
- Funny – Gracioso / Graciosa or Chistoso / Chistosa
- Fiery – Ardiente
- Sassy – Descarada / Descarado
Note that “funny” can be both chistoso / chistosa and gracioso / graciosa. Gracioso is “funny” in Spain, while chistoso is “funny” in Latin America.
“Busy” and “Free” in Spanish
We all get really busy sometimes. If you’re bogged down with things to do, say “Estoy ocupado ahora” (“I’m busy now”).
“Busy” in Spanish is ocupado / ocupada, and the opposite is libre or “free (not busy)”. You could also use inundado / inundada to say you’re “swamped” or flooded with work right now.
Verbs for Talking about Emotions in Spanish
In Spanish, you either “are”, “have”, or “feel” an emotion. Here’s how to know what verb to pair with your feelings in Spanish.
“I am…” in Spanish – Estar
You use the verb estar to talk about your feelings right now. So, for example, talking about your own current feelings of happiness in Spanish would be “Estoy feliz”.
Most adjectives use estar to say “I am __.”
“Feel” in Spanish – Sentirse
These two verbs make up how you most often describe your emotions: you either “feel” them, or you “are” them. For instance, Me siento feliz (“I feel happy”) vs. Estoy feliz (“I am happy”). They both mean essentially the same thing, but one expresses the emotion you feel and the other describes your current state of being. You choose which verb you want to use the same way you would in English.
So to ask, “How do you feel?” in Spanish, it’s ¿Cómo te sientes? To reply, you say “Me siento…”
“To have” in Spanish – Tener
This one gets a bit tricky for beginners, but you get used to it with time. Some feelings are “had” instead of “felt” in Spanish. Where you would say “I’m hungry” in English, instead, you say Tengo hambre in Spanish. When you pair this verb with a noun, it translates as “I have _”. So, tengo hambre means “I have hunger”.
Some common feelings that pair with this verb are sed (“thirsty”), sueño (“sleepy”), frío (“cold”), and calor (“hot”).
Add Emphasis to Your Emotions
If you want to add more or less emotion to your sentiment, then you can use these phrases below:
- A little – Un poco
- A little bit / A tiny bit – Un poquito
- Very – Muy
Just add them before the adjective, like “Estoy muy ocupado” (“I’m very busy”).
With nouns, you would add de for “a little” or “a little bit”, and use mucha for “very / a lot”. Using the examples from above, it would be un poco de calor (“a little hot”), un poquito de hambre (“a little bit hungry”), and mucha sed (“very thirsty”).
Express Yourself in Spanish!
Ready to go out and tell the world how you feel? Learning these Spanish words and phrases can help you become comfortable talking in depth about how you really feel.
Gone are the days of skimming the surface with the handful of words you know. Now, you can share your emotions in Spanish to deepen your relationships and make new friends. After all, communication in language learning is about expressing yourself, right?
Did I miss any words or phrases you often use to express yourself in Spanish? Share it with me in the comments and let me know what common words you use. Or, if you have tips for memorising Spanish words faster, share them as well!
And finally... One of the best ways to learn a new language is with podcasts. Read more about how to use podcasts to learn a language.