Learn to control your emotions at work

Anger, frustration, anxiety, have you experienced any of these emotions at work?

Keep reading and learn to keep them under control.

In 1993, Anne Kreamer was vice president of the Nickelodeon children’s channel, and celebrated with her team an alliance with Sony for $ 25 million dollars. While celebrating success after 18 months of arduous negotiations, she received an unexpected call.

Her assistant informed her that Sumner Redstone, president of the company and majority shareholder of Viacom, Inc., Nickelodeon’s parent company, was waiting on the other side of the line.

Kreamer was flattered to think that the president was calling to congratulate her personally, but she felt stunned when the expected recognition was actually a minute and a half of shouting and complaining.

Redstone had in mind to acquire Paramount Communications and expected a significant increase in Viatcom shares after the announcement of the deal with Sony, the share price did not rise as desired and Redstone retaliated by angerly blaming Kreamer for what happened.

Disconcerted and angry, Kreamer broke down in tears in front of her collaborators, congratulated them and gave them the rest of the afternoon off. Later, she felt humiliated and guilty for not being able to control herself after the incident.

Kreamer did not lose her job, she worked for Nickelodeon for another 2 years and 7 months, but she kept reflecting on that episode in her professional life, which inspired her to write her book It’s always personal: Navigating Emotion in the New Workplace.

Feeling anger, frustration, fear, anxiety and stress at work is absolutely normal, however, the prevailing labor culture pushes workers to suppress their emotions and explode elsewhere, except in the office.

What to do to not lose control?

You must recognize what you are feeling, ignoring your emotions does not allow you to assume them and overcome them. The risk is to become a pressure cooker and burst at the least appropriate time.

Neither act on impulse, it will be counterproductive if you respond to an aggression with another, for example. When you face a situation that impacts you negatively you should take some time to analyze what causes it, what makes you feel and what is the best way to deal with it.

Here we give you some recommendations to approach Emotional Intelligence as well as some of the typical negative feelings at work.

Anger

The first step is to identify what is bothering you. If anger can trigger your anger, it is wise to clear it up. Take 5 minutes to get out of the office, take a walk or just sit down and put your ideas in order.

Controlling anger does not mean suppressing it, once you have calmed down, you have to act. First, clarify what made you angry? Is it in your hands to control the situation? Can you get others to change the attitude that bothers you? If the answer is yes, act, but always be relaxed.

Anxiety

Unforeseen, unexpected or uncertain situations can cause us a lot of anxiety. They usually involve circumstances that are beyond our control, which is why they generate stress and fear.

Anxiety is triggered when we think over and over again about a subject about which we have no opportunity for action. For example, if you are worried that your company is failing, and you may be fired, stop thinking about the difficult situation you will face if you lose your job.

Instead of being overwhelmed by something that still hasn’t happened and what you cannot influence, devote your energy in positive actions: cut your expenses and pay them to your debts, update your resume, think of other ways to earn money.

Frustration

When we work hard and do not obtain the expected result, frustration appears, which often blocks us and makes us think that all efforts are useless and that there are no other possible solutions.

Instead of interpreting situations as ‘failures’, look at them as attempts, and take the time to evaluate the strategy and learn from the error. Exercise your patience and try again.

Disappointment

Did you go to the interview and they did not call you again? Did you expect a promotion and gave it to someone else? It’s easy to feel disappointed when things do not happen, but it does not do much to park there.

Often our failures seem more important than they are, analyze what went wrong and decide what you will do differently next time.

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Rejection

Rejection hurts. It can diminish our self-confidence and security, but it also tests our perseverance.

Stop thinking about others disqualifying you or judging you, better think, whose rejection does it come from? Can I get constructive criticism? Is it an opportunity to improve?

Envy

To want what others have is a negative feeling in the workplace, it can even be destructive.

Just to suffer for the ‘good luck’ of others without taking action to improve our own behaviors, is a useless feeling. A person who is sure of their abilities and has a desire to improve themselves and grow will not feel envy, will observe the positive in the other and will use it to go after their own objectives.

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