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. Could this be getting in the way of your career progression?
The usual human way is that we feel first, then think, then react. However, if you are not aware of this, then very often you can mistake the feeling for thinking. It is so important to be aware the role your emotions play in how you react to others, the action you take and ultimately, the perception you create of yourself through your behaviour at work. A lack of emotional control doesn’t help your credibility, reputation and personal brand i.e. what people think of when they think of you. To read more about Personal Brand, click here.
This is not to say you should deny your feelings and emotions about a particular happening or indeed never display any. The skill is to be able to ‘manage’ them, to put them to one side, whilst you think about what outcome you 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 your thinking about how to react. When you think about your 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 their behaviour and reactions which can be especially dangerous in a work context.
Considering this natural human model also helps you to consider how you communicate difficult messages to people. If you have considered how they might feel about something, this then forces you to consider how you should approach the topic and position it with those you are communicating to.
When you 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.
There are two further considerations. If people are wary of how you will react i.e. you are inconsistent or likely to fly off the handle then this has a really negative effect on professional relationships; people will try to avoid engaging with you unless they have to and it is likely to affect how they will approach you. You can read more about this in this article of the Self-Fulfilling Prophecy.
Secondly, if you have a tendency to always react emotionally, it does not differentiate situations from one another, if there is a lack of emotional control no matter what.
Understanding your own emotions and those of others at work and therefore considering reactions and how you 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? Are they fundamentally affecting your career progression? Which situations do you need to consider your emotional control? 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 for a no obligation, 30 minute Career Booster session to see how I can help.
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