Are Emotions Forbidden in Business?

 My dad often says we should leave emotions out of business. Anger, sadness and fear often lead us into poor choices in life and we often regret but only too late. But what if we're able to sense these incoming emotions, can we put them to good use instead? 

As a meditator, I've become better and better at recognising my own emotions. At the very least, I know when I am happy or sad about a situation. Acknowledgement is a good first step, and the next step is to express it as productively as possible. We may have witnessed or participated in many unproductive forms of expression. For example, we sometimes raise our voices or slam doors or tables. Sometimes it can be something more subtle, like rolling our eyes or sighing loudly. These will often lead to a chain reaction around the people you're with and cascade these negative emotions throughout your organisation like a dominos effect. 

Instead, we should try first expressing our emotions verbally. Literally tell people around us, "I am angry about this." or "I am upset because..." Putting a word onto an emotion contains it and allows it to be safely acknowledged by the people around us. Don't try to avoid or suppress the emotion entirely as it will only surface at other times. 

At the same time, we should practice expressing our positive emotions. Use words like, "I'm glad that you..." or "I'm excited about..." Humans naturally want to please the people around them, especially their bosses. It doesn't have to be a bad thing - simple acknowledgements like these help validate that they are on the right track. 

Since starting to use these emotionally packed words, I've felt more authentic with my people, expressed our emotions in more productive forms, and created a more harmonious workplace for everyone. 


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