Leaders Exert Control Over Emotions

The best leaders can exert intellectual control over their emotions. It is not that they don’t have emotions—that would be cold and mechanical. It is not that they don’t inspire emotions—people will follow leaders who inspire their best emotions.

However, when followers always feel as if they are in some quicksand of ever changing and intense emotional outbursts, stability and willingness to follow are sacrificed. People are always wasting time reading the emotional temper of the day and trying to adjust their actions and words to fit.

Don’t consider this mere theory. Once the president of my company perhaps indulged in more than adequate amount of martinis before speaking to a conference of the company’s top management team and proceeded to rip the department led by his rival for the top spot. Another leader exhibited bi-polar symptoms disappearing for a few days and then writing inane emails 24-hours-a-day for a couple of days. Neither was a success or inspired confidence.

Here are some thoughts for us as we try to develop a higher emotional intelligence and improve our chances for leadership success. I didn’t note the source of these but I suspect Daniel Goleman.

1. You have a robust emotional vocabulary.

All people experience emotions, but it is a select few who can accurately identify them as they occur. People with high EQs master their emotions because they understand them, and they use an extensive vocabulary of feelings to do so. The more specific your word choice, the better insight you have into exactly how you are feeling, what caused it and what you should do about it.

2. You’re curious about people.

It doesn’t matter if they’re introverted or extroverted, emotionally intelligent people are curious about everyone around them. This curiosity is the product of empathy, one of the most significant gateways to a high EQ. The more you care about other people and what they’re going through, the more curiosity you’re going to have about them.

3. You embrace change.

Emotionally intelligent people are flexible and are constantly adapting. They know that fear of change is paralyzing and a major threat to their success and happiness. They look for change that is lurking just around the corner, and they form a plan of action should these changes occur.

4. You know your strengths and weaknesses.

Emotionally intelligent people don’t just understand emotions; they know what they’re good at and what they’re terrible at. They also know who pushes their buttons and the environments (both situations and people) that enable them to succeed.

5. You’re a good judge of character.

Much of emotional intelligence comes down to social awareness; the ability to read other people, know what they’re about, and understand what they’re going through. Over time, this skill makes you an exceptional judge of character.

6. You are difficult to offend.

If you have a firm grasp of whom you are, it’s difficult for someone to say or do something that gets your goat. Emotionally intelligent people are self-confident and open-minded, which creates a pretty thick skin.

7. You let go of mistakes.

Emotionally intelligent people distance themselves from their mistakes, but do so without forgetting them. By keeping their mistakes at a safe distance, yet still handy enough to refer to, they are able to adapt and adjust for future success.

8. You give and expect nothing in return.

When someone gives you something spontaneously, without expecting anything in return, this leaves a powerful impression.

9. You don’t hold grudges.

The negative emotions that come with holding onto a grudge are actually a stress response. Just thinking about the event sends your body into fight-or-flight mode, a survival mechanism that forces you to stand up and fight or run for the hills when faced with a threat.

10. You neutralize toxic people.

Dealing with difficult people is frustrating and exhausting for most. When they need to confront a toxic person, they approach the situation rationally. They identify their own emotions and don’t allow anger or frustration to fuel the chaos. They also consider the difficult person’s standpoint and are able to find solutions and common ground.S

11. You appreciate what you have.

Taking time to contemplate what you’re grateful for isn’t merely the right thing to do; it also improves your mood because it reduces the stress hormone cortisol by 23 percent. Research conducted at the University of California, Davis, found that people who worked daily to cultivate an attitude of gratitude experienced improved mood, energy and physical well-being. It’s likely that lower levels of cortisol played a major role in this.

12. You disconnect.

Taking regular time off the grid is a sign of a high EQ because it helps you to keep your stress under control and to live in the moment.

13. You get enough sleep.

It’s difficult to overstate the importance of sleep to increasing your emotional intelligence and managing your stress levels. When you sleep, your brain literally recharges, shuffling through the day’s memories and storing or discarding them (which causes dreams) so that you wake up alert and clearheaded.

One Response to “Leaders Exert Control Over Emotions”

  1. Schondorf.Blog Says:

    There is one member of our household who ticks pretty much all the points on your list – especially No. 13. Her name is Fräulein Rosa.

    Best regards and stay safe

    Leopold Ploner sent from my mobile +49 172 8231 062

    >

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