Emotions are powerful motivators and are the e-motion ofr energy behind the motions we take. They inform us and others of priorities, drive us toward or away from people and things. Reading the information of our emotions accurately, modulating them masterfully and interpreting them in others is the new success criteria in the executive suite. Ninety-six percent (96%) of our success comes from our emotional intelligence, while only 8-9% comes from our IQ or technical skill.
E-movere is French for the energy of motion. When we engage the passion behind our thinking, we are tapping into a resource we all have, but few can “read” accurately. Use the guidelines below to help you understand the accuracy of the messages these sentinels are sending your way. And if you ever feel your emotions getting the best of you, calm yourself with some bubble wrap therapy.
We feel anger in our shoulders and neck. Typically, anger tells us that we have been violated in some way. Someone has let us down, shut us down, put us down or diminished us in some way, such that we feel violated. Anger is a secondary emotion—it comes about because under the anger, we have been hurt.
Anger & resentment cause rigidity and only hurts us. Feel the power of anger you have, and go for the release (not the revenge). Write a letter you’ll never send, take it to a good friend, but “process” the feeling while using the energy to move you forward into a courageous conversation that will change the event. Self care encourages you to engage in the emotions of the heart—practice appreciation, forgiveness, patience, kindness (and watch if this creates resistance for you—it’s a sign that you need these things as much as you need to give them away.)
Usually rising from our solar plexes, anxiety materializes when our power is being thwarted by conflict between wanting to move forward and yet holding ourselves back. Anxiety is a compound emotion that is a combination of both fear and excitement when faced with a new task or undertaking. The failure to move creates paralysis, and serves to dis-empower us.
Anxiety falls on a continuum between fear and excitement, so we can choose the direction in which we would like to move. By lessening one, we strengthen the other. Face the fear of your own limited thinking that might be holding you back and take a small step that moves you into the desired reaction. Tipping the scales in the direction of desire lessens anxiety.
Get a dose of optimism >>
When we are envious, we are watching someone or something else and getting the message that we are not living up to our potential. We are experiencing something we know we can have, be or do, but have not yet found the way or the wherewithal to venture forward to it.
Ask yourself, “What am I seeing that I like and desire that I am not experiencing in my own life today. What would need to be different in order for me to have/be/do it? What steps can I take tomorrow that will bring me closer to that experience?"
Fear is a natural, visceral response to danger or threat that releases powerful stress hormones that can shut down our immune system and lead us into actions we otherwise might avoid. Fear tells us we are doing something for the first time—facing the unknown and we might be in danger. That is, we may not be prepared for the venture we are undertaking.
The fight or flight response kept us alive when we lived on the Savannah. Today, we often experience both fight and flight as we vacillate in approach and avoidance. Facing what we fear with a rational mind, we usually find that it is our thinking—about the future and what might be, or the past and what has always been. We are in breakdown. Look down, see your where your feet are, knowing that you are here, now, and assess what the danger might be and then, tap your extensive resources to choose a course of action, or no action at all.
Our culture avoids grief and sadness as darker emotions, believing that “smile and the world smiles with you; cry and you cry alone. Truth is, we connect more to others in sadness than in superficial joy. Nonetheless, grief and sadness is a sign of loss—we’ve been disillusioned, disappointed or are despaired by someone or something. It is a sign that we are complete with the event, the relationship, or the obligation.
Sadness is not an enemy, but an opportunity to move on from that which no longer serves you. When we grieve, we are losing something old that no longer works, and making a space for something new. Ask yourself, “What is it that no longer serves me?” and let it go. Be sad. Grieve the loss. And start to become curious about what it is that you are making room for in your life, in your future.
We lack energy and interest. We are feeling depressed when we are not living up to our potential. We have a sense of futility when we have repressed our power and potential and start to believe we are less than we truly are. This general malaise comes about because we have relinquished our choices and are staying powerless.
We need to re-generate the possibilities and choices we have so we begin to see opportunity. Start by finding five things each day to be grateful for, and give charity or volunteer—this will help you begin to appreciate and see the value of your unique contribution.
Love releases positive hormones, and has a powerful physiological effect on all the systems in our bodies. Conjugal love, the kind we share equally is experienced as we consciously choose to appreciate ourselves and others for the good we choose to see in them and in ourselves for what we love.
Make a conscious effort to choose a perspective that looks for the positives in the people and events around you. The operative word is choose. We have a choice—we can look for negatives and reasons to oppose, but we move from competition into collaboration and cooperation when we choose to appreciate the good in others. And, let them know it.