Emotions are the expression of our inner world in the environment. Although many theories teach people to express their emotions directly and without fear, our society has already set some barriers and rules, often called norms, regarding what a good or bad emotion means. The modern business world looks deeply into emotions, paradigms, and tools on how to dee and then manage emotions overseen in the years before. Now, with the free will and choice for everyone, emotion is more significant and even impacts many of the spheres of existence like personal life, circle of close relatives and friends, work environment, and many more. While living in a stressful world, we often need space to express our emotions. Still, often this expression may cause us to look immature and unreliable to others, only judging us on our emotional face.
The question that holds everyone awake is not “How to express emotions”? But more “How to manage emotions, so they do not harm our presence and growth as a person and professional”?
People now are focused on learning skills to manage emotions in a way that will help them grow and reposition themselves in the minds of others. But unfortunately, the effort is so massive that some people fall into the trap of depression. While not so easy to touch, emotions are difficult to be acknowledged and verified, and at the same time, they are part of our everyday life, and we need to learn to manage them and live with the consequences of their expression in the world.
While being younger and inexperienced, I have faced many situations where my emotions have turned me from winner to loser. I have learned many valuable lessons from these situations, but the most painful of them have turned me back to the point where I have started my journey toward a specific goal. In time I have learned to deal with emotions, supported by some of the best mentors and coaches I have met. They were not only experienced in dealing with emotions but had the time to invest in helping me build skills to deal with emotions. Therefore, I will present you with skills to help you deal with your feelings and turn them into positive outcomes and results.
This first one is an essential skill that many people do not possess. While thinking that we can explain what is happening with our inner world, we often fail. Intentions to show everyone what we feel, turn back and live the curtains of uncertainty stop us from acknowledging our emotions in the right way. Naming an emotion makes it visible and ensures that we have understood what our condition is caused by. No matter if it is a positive or negative emotion, giving it a name makes it recognizable. It allows the person to search for the most appropriate strategy to deal with that emotion.
The second valuable skill to learn is to find the cause, the roots of the emotion. In many cases, what we think may be caused by a specific emotion is not even close to the root cause of the feeling but a distraction created by our body and mind to allow us to rationalize the emotion. According to Dr. Peter Tenev – Psychologist, Psychotherapist, and researcher, more than 77% of people accept the first possible cause for a feeling and do not go to the roots of the emotion.
DIVIDE PROBABLE FROM POSSIBLE
In many situations, while accepting the first thing that moves through our mind as a cause of the emotion experienced, we also mistake the power of the emotion and the factors that may have caused it. In our consciousness, we compare categories of elements, moving them from possible to impossible. The potential factors for many of us are the list of things that may have caused the situation. But here, the person should also make another analysis. While building the first list with possible causes for the expressed emotions, people often stop here and forget the second step – the level of probability. Yes, there may be a list of possible causes for the feelings, but the next step is to define, according to the situation we are in, what is the probability for some or all of these causes to happen. Executing that second step lowers the number of possible reasons and creates more clarity and focus toward the closest to the situation list of causes.
CONTROL ONLY WHAT YOU CAN
When finding the root cause of the emotion, people often start thinking about how to minimize that emotion’s effect. And in that strategy thinking process, many of us lose ourselves with the idea of “taking control over the list of causes.” It is impossible to control everything and everyone. Trying to do that only creates more emotions and stress. What every person should realize is the scope and the range of the emotional triggers that they can realistically manage. And what cannot be addressed must be left the way it is. Trying to take control over something that is not manageable or in our span of personal control often creates negative emotions, feelings, and depressive conditions.
IMPROVE THE WAY YOU USE TIME
The short amount of time we have is at the roots of every emotion. No time for everything we want to do is the main reason for causing feelings and, at the same time, when finished in time, creates another set of emotions. According to HBR research, back in 2021, seventy-nine percent of people struggled to find time for everything they planned to achieve. And in every situation caused by lack of time, emotions arise. The person should understand that time is limited, and managing it successfully can guarantee success. No matter the situation, the healthy balance between time invested and results achieved is what people seek. Getting to the point where that understanding becomes a guiding principle is a prerequisite for planning better times and achieving meaningful results.
TAKE SMALL AND MEANINGFUL STEPS
The best approach is to deal with everything as fast as possible. However, it would help if you made it all happen in the shortest timeframe. – Right? Well, this cannot be farther away from the truth. Emotions are often caused because we fail to deal with everything we want at a current moment in time. The best reaction toward emotions is to plan what to execute and make it possible for you to complete it. Emotions are stones for every one of us. If we want to take them to the point where they cannot harm us, we need to do it in small steps. The best actions taken toward emotions are not those who change everything at once but those who make us do small steps and win small wins. The small victories are the milestones that build a person’s self-esteem. Collecting all the small wins at the end will make the person feel better but feel winner because these small steps create the progress anyone wants to see to judge a winner.
COMPARTMENTALIZE OR POSTPONE YOUR WORRY
Worrying about anything at every particular moment is a massive booster for emotions. And unfortunately for negative emotions. People who feel drained by their emotions and reach burnout often produce this environment. While under constant stress, many people stop thinking and let their profound feelings go out. To better manage emotions, the person needs to start prioritizing emotions. The more we worry, the more emotions show up. If there is a way to lower the pressure, then this should be found in postponing the stressor. For example, there is no need to panic and overreact if the deadline for a task or a project is six weeks before you. But the worry may be far more accurate if you have like six days and need ten to finish a job or a project. Postponing worry does not mean forgetting it but balancing many concerns so that the effects in time from these worries can be balanced and manageable.
MAKE CONNECTIONS WITH OTHERS
How simple that thing sounds. And t the same time, I often hear that if there is a need for help, you cannot call anyone. That is because many people break the connection with others, expecting them to be present only when needed. Social life is a symbiosis of links, created and sustained in time to get out of the shadows and help the person when they cannot deal with emotions alone. The more connection we have made, the easier it is for us to deal with emotions and find people ready to help us with expertise, advice, or in-person emotional support. The fewer the number of connections the person has built, the less they can count on dealing with emotions in a balanced way.
No matter what we think, emotions are part of our lives and can affect, in both – positive and negative ways, our lives and anyone around us. Therefore, the better a person learns to deal with emotions, the happier and more successful they will feel.