"The ability to accurately perceive others’ emotions from nonverbal cues (emotion recognition ability [ERA]) is typically conceptualized as an adaptive skill. Accordingly, many studies have found positive correlations between ERA and measures of social and professional success. This chapter, in contrast, examines whether high ERA can also have downsides, both for other people and for oneself. A literature review revealed little evidence that high-ERA individuals use their skill to hurt others. However, high ERA may inadvertently harm romantic and professional relationships when one perceives potentially disruptive information. Furthermore, high-ERA individuals do not appear to be happier with their lives than low-ERA individuals. Overall, the advantages of high ERA outweigh the downsides, but many open questions regarding negative effects remain to be studied."

It can also lead to emotional upset, anxiety, and depression.