How many times have you had an initial reaction to something and then thankfully had some time away and then your reaction has calmed down somewhat? Think of that demanding email from a client, or the email you receive late at night with some feedback when you are still working.
The usual human way is that we feel first then think then react. However, if we are not aware of this, then very often we can mistake the feeling for thinking. It is so important to be aware the role our emotions play in how we react to others, the action we take and ultimately, the perception we create of ourselves through our behaviour at work.
This is not to say we should deny our feelings and emotions about a particular happening. The skill is to be able to ‘manage’ them, to put them to one side, whilst we think about what outcome we want from a situation i.e. put some thought into it, before looking at what feelings are present and how they could be contributing to our thinking about how to react. When we think about our desired outcome, that can then help to alter the feelings slightly to channel them towards supporting the achievement of that outcome.
The majority of the time, people underestimate the impact and influence feelings have on our behaviour and reactions which can be especially dangerous in a work context.
Considering this natural human model also helps us to consider how we communicate difficult messages to people. If we have considered how they might feel about something, this then forces us to consider how we should approach the topic and position it with those we are communicating to.
When we do this, it is more likely the person receiving the message will feel respected and valued, they are more likely to react to a less than positive message in a better way e.g. taking feedback as an opportunity to learn rather than a criticism. The opposite is true if somebody feels undervalued and ignored.
Understanding our own emotions and those of others at work and therefore considering reactions and how we communicate increases the success of both individuals and teams at work to achieve better outcomes. The question today is how do your feelings work for or against you at work? How could considering the feelings of others help you consider how you communicate for a better result? When individuals and teams feel better about themselves, more is achieved and the working environment is better for all each day.
If you are feeling some of your professional relationships are a struggle and are causing you concern or holding you back from achieving what you want to, contact me to see how I may be able to help.
Image courtesy of freeimages.com/RobertOwen-Wahl