Controlling your emotions can be a useful skill and can allow you to deal with many issues more effectively. However, be aware that controlling your emotions is not the same as suppressing your emotions.
Emotional Intelligence is a skill that allows the practitioner to:
A. Be more aware of their emotions.
B. Tactful in handling your own emotions.
C. Tactful in handling other people’s emotions.
The most widely accepted model is Mayer, Caruso, and Saloveys four branch model.
This model will unlock the following four abilities:
1. Recognize/perceive your own and others emotions.
2. Make use of emotions to communicate.
3. Understand and control emotions.
4. Manage emotions to foster understanding and develop self-growth.
Using the principles of this “Four branch method,” the following tips will assist in learning how to learn to control your emotions. Useful tips put together will make this process easy.
Tune Into Your Emotions.
For many people, the act of consciously thinking about their emotions is something alien to them. Simply learning to stop and think about how they feel will be a big step. Many people spend their lives overriding their emotions. The first step in this exercise is to try and recognize those moments when you override your emotions and jot them down.
We are all guilty of responding to the question “How are you?” with a quick “fine,” we don’t even think how we are really feeling, we are so used to giving that answer, that we don’t think and answer immediately.
In itself, this is not a huge problem; after all, the person that inquired was probably not expecting a long list of your problems. The real issue is that we are so used to making these snap responses that we start doing the same thing to more serious inquiries. We suppress our emotions.
Stop Right There.
When you do successfully tune into your emotions. Consider what you are feeling right now, and then, Stop right There and rewind a little. How did you really get to be feeling the way you are feeling now? Try and establish what made you feel this way. You could be surprised at what the true cause was.
Possibly you reacted with anger when your wife asked you to put the trash out. Is that the real reason why you are angry, or is it possible that you had a bad day at work.
Trying to find out the true cause of our emotions is an important first step in learning how to learn to control your emotions.
So, to recap. The moment you notice an emotion, stop, rewind and think hard about what the true cause of that emotion is.
The next step to follow, once you have identified that emotion, and understood why you are feeling that way, is to think ahead.
What may happen if we take action based on this emotional state in which we find ourselves?
How will we change the emotional state of others?
If we stop and think for a moment about the future and consequences of any action now, we are likely to have more chance of diffusing the situation.
Going back to our example where you have flared up because you were asked to put the trash out. You have already rewound and established that the true problem is the bad day at work and not your wife. Now you have moved forward and realized that by responding angrily, we would provoke anger in your wife who feels that she was making a reasonable request. This angry response will probably lead to a bad evening at home to match your bad day at work.
So by rewinding and identifying the true cause and then moving forward to see what could happen if you respond angrily, you have an opportunity to modify your response to the Trash request!
You have moved back, moved forward, and now you need to look at exactly how you are feeling now. You need to look at how this emotion is expressing itself internally.
For example, are your muscles tense?
If you can learn exactly how your body responds to each emotion, you can recognize them earlier.
Once you can identify these physical feelings, then you can develop a faster way of coping and diffusing that feeling.
Re-Balance the Inputs.
In any given situation, we are aware of how we are feeling at that moment, and we may verbally express how we are feeling. It is possible to become so under control of an emotion that we forget to listen to what other people are telling us verbally or non-verbally.
This inability to understand other people’s responses can lead to a false understanding of a situation that can provoke an emotion that is not needed. Learning to be more at the moment and to become more aware of others can avoid conflicts and misunderstandings.
Monitor Negative Emotions Carefully.
Negative emotions will occur from time to time. If we use the skills you have learned so far, the impact can be kept under control.
The danger is that when we let one negative emotion take hold that it will attract others. This collection of negative emotions will then feed on each other and what was just a mild annoyance; can develop into anger or rage.
If you feel this happening the trick is to try and focus on more positive emotions.
What is there at this moment that you have to be grateful for?
Final Thoughts / Mindfulness.
It’s time to put this all together and create a strategy for controlling emotions. The word that best describes this technique is mindfulness. We have learned several useful tips. We have started to learn how to learn to control emotions. With mindfulness, we make ourselves aware of the moment; we take heed of what other people are saying and what they are hiding.
Always are aware of the signals that our body is sending to us, and what that means. We have developed the ability to go back and review what has caused the current emotion.
Now can flash forward and understand how things will play out unless we change our actions. Doing this, you are in control; you are not simply being carried along with a wave.
Also read the post: How Do You Answer: Where Do You See Yourself In 10 Years?