Let’s Talk about…Emotions!

Emotions Blog by Zilvold Coaching & Training
8 min read

Summary:
This article is about feelings and emotions. It contains techniques and tips that can help you deal with them more effectively at work and at home. This way you can experience more joy and satisfaction in your life.

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“What do you feel?”, asked the coach. That is something I often ask my clients! But now I was asked that question. I felt a lot, but I found it hard to put into words.

“What emotion comes with this feeling?”, the coach continued. I usually feel a lot and have little trouble expressing my emotions. This can by crying, laughing (excessively) or getting angry. But today I did not know what I felt and what emotion was connected to that feeling.

Many of my clients, like technicians, engineers and also managers of (care) departments, have a hard time expressing what they feel and what emotion is involved. Perhaps it is not measurable or manageable for these people. That is not surprising because there are around 34 thousand emotions. Then try to name the right one.

This article is about feelings, emotions and it can help you deal with them more effectively at work and at home.

What are emotions?

Emotions are energy in motion. It often starts with an awareness of a thought or an event. That creates a feeling and expresses itself in an emotion and reaction.
An example: It is very busy at the office. The phone keeps ringing and you find out that a project is delayed. Because of the stress you react irritated (and you may scream). Do you recognize this? It is energy in motion.

There are 4 core emotions that are the basis for all other emotions:

  • Joy
  • Anger
  • Sadness
  • Fear

Other emotions such as surprise, grief, disgust, love, shame, acceptance are also referred to in the literature (Ekman, Plutchik, Pollack) as basic emotions. It is not clear how many basic emotions there are but in the movie “Inside Out” by Disney Pixar they are explained well:

It is surprising that there are more unpleasant (basic) emotions than pleasant ones. We are more likely to suffer from our unpleasant emotions. That’s because they help us survive.

Benefits of dealing with emotions better

Emotions give you important information and show if things go the way you want. They help you survive by responding quickly and efficiently to important situations or events in your life (both in the office, on the road and at home). They help you to interact with other people and with what comes your way (expectations and demands).

It is useful to be able to deal with emotions when we experience intense feelings and can no longer act objectively because we respond impulsively (by “fight”, “flight” or “freeze”). This is can happen if we are angry, stressed or surprised.

Emotions help you find out what you need from yourself and from others. They help you figure out what you want. If you know that, you can take action to meet those expectations. You express what you feel through your emotions. Your past experiences in life can determine how you react emotionally.
Maybe you were often bullied in the past, which made you feel insecure and sad. At a certain point you decided that you no longer wanted this. You then put an armor around you to defend yourself. As a result, others can no longer connect with you, whereas you may need security, love, or connection.

It is useful to be able to deal with emotions when we experience intense feelings and can no longer act objectively because we respond impulsively (by “fight”, “flight” or “freeze”). This is can happen if we are angry, stressed or surprised.

In the office, the benefits of dealing better with emotions are that performance can go up and that people enjoy their work more.

How to deal more effective with feelings and emotions

You and others may have to deal with emotions. The emotions of others can have an effect on yourself. Imagine what it does to you when someone is angry with you.

It is about standing still and being aware of an event or situation. You can help yourself and others with emotions by being empathetic, being patient, talking about it, telling what your true feelings or emotions are and accepting that you are dealing with different emotions.

You can change your emotions with others by, for example, not being irritated but rather curious. Dealing better with your emotions has a positive effect on self-leadership and leadership towards a team.

You can do the exercises (or follow the tips) below to better deal with feelings and emotions, both at home and at the workplace:

  • Breathe (deeply and regularly)
  • Count to 10 in a stressful situation
  • Go back to your values
  • Make a list of daily emotions and name them as accurately as possible
  • Reflect (think) about how you feel NOW
  • Watch people
  • Take responsibility for your own behavior and how you treat others
  • Really live in the moment
  • Pay attention to the little things by saying “thank you” or “please” and mentioning the names of others during a conversation
  • Do not take feedback from others personally; it does not determine who you are
  • Connect with your WHY
  • Make a list of questions you can ask in difficult situations (“And now what?”, “What do you think is happening?” Or “What do you want?”)
  • Take the time to explore and solve problems (a coach, trainer or mentor can help you with this).

With emotions you can also use the “elevator” as described in the article about character strengths. during an important situation, ask yourself the following: What did I think? What did I feel? and What did I want?
By finding out what you wanted (or what your team wanted) you are standing above the emotions and you can use your character strengths to achieve what you want.

Working with emotions

So, it all starts with the recognition of your own emotions and those of others. Then it’s about learning how to deal with your own emotions and learning about social skills to better deal with the emotions of others. You can, for example, use the DiSC communication tool (Read this and this article how you can use DiSC for more effective communication and dealing with conflicts).

By being aware of your emotions you can choose how you shape your life, your work and your relationships. You can choose to stop and enjoy the moments in your life so that you are more effective and experience more joy and satisfaction.

How do you deal with emotions and what tips or exercises do you have? Let me know in the comment field below. I and the other readers of this article are looking forward to reading from you!

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