Managing your emotions intelligently means channeling them and keeping a certain balance. If you can do this, it will be positive for both yourself and for those around you. You’ll also keep your emotions from running your life.
When your emotions are in balance, you’re more productive, more creative, and happier. You keep what you feel from taking over who you are. In other words, it’s a way to make your emotions constructive and work for you, not against you.
“Emotional intelligence accounts for 80% of success in life.”
Then you’ll be able to set goals and achieve them. You’ll be better equipped to have healthy relationships and offer the best of you. All it takes is determination and perseverance. Here are four tips if you’re ready to manage your emotions and do it smarter.
1. Understand that bad emotions do not exist
Emotions have a reason for being. Therefore, it is an error to classify them as either good or bad. Instead, what really is going on is that certain stimuli are conducive to certain emotions. It is unavoidable.
Fear, for example, is a response to a threat. If we didn’t experience it, we would easily fall into reckless, life-threatening behavior. Anger is also a defense response, with the job of preparing us for an attack.
Therefore, there are no bad emotions. To learn how to manage your emotions, the important thing is to know how to interpret what each of them is saying. They’re telling you that something needs to be addressed.
2. Allow yourself to feel
Traditional education and upbringing almost never teach you how to manage your emotions. Instead, they convince you that there are feelings and emotions that you shouldn’t experience. They tell you, for example, that crying or being afraid doesn’t solve anything and should be suppressed.
However, emotions are not spontaneously born, nor do they spontaneously go away. Therefore, repressing what you feel is not a correct way to manage feelings. Trying to suffocate what you feel just postpones its expression. Repressed emotions will then sometimes come out badly.
The first thing, then, is to understand that all emotions are valid and have the right to exist and be expressed. If you accept what you feel, it will be much easier to manage your emotions. Not accepting them will create confusion and chaos inside.
3. Observe, observe, observe
The best way to manage your emotions is by accepting them, but also understanding them. To do this, you must learn how to observe them very well. Simply paying attention to them is a huge step towards managing them properly
Daniel Goleman, the great theorist of emotional intelligence, says that “attention regulates emotion“. This means that when you focus on what you’re feeling, that subjective experience is automatically modulated or nuanced.
To observe your emotions, just ask: what am I feeling? How do I feel? Then try to put a precise name to that emotion. Is it anger, or is it frustration? Is it sadness or fatigue? The more accurate the identification, the easier it will be to understand.
4. Be critical with your thoughts
Contrary to what many believe, many of your thoughts arise mechanically. They are interpretations of reality, which sometimes have a foundation and sometimes do not. Sometimes they are the result of reasoning, and sometimes they are not.
Thought is not reality, but rather a filter of reality. It causes us to feel a certain way when certain things happen, and may lead us to make mistakes. For example, thinking can tell us that something is a hassle. But it could also tell us that it is a challenge, an opportunity. However, this only happens if you dare to question your own ideas and not let yourself get carried away by them.
Learning to manage your emotions intelligently means you must be wide awake. It means you must be observant to what’s happening inside of you. It may be difficult at the beginning, but the benefits are so great that it is well worth the effort.