Why focus on emotions? (DW#450)

emotions feelings opinon Sep 14, 2018

How are you feeling today? If you are feeling good, happy, confident it is likely that you feel ready to take on the world. You feel like nothing can get in your way. You are productive and energetic. 

If on the other hand, you are having a bad day, feeling sad, anxious or upset for any reason, you may be lacking this confidence and energy. 

If you are angry, and you end up losing control, your emotions can get the best of you and cause you to act in ways that you later regret. 

So let’s be honest: how we are feeling on a day to day basis impacts how much we enjoy life and how productive we are. 

But emotions do much more than that. 

Here are some reasons, we need to become smarter about our own emotional state: 

1)   Emotions motivate us to act. The word emotion itself comes from a word which means to move – in other words emotions cause us to take action
2)   Because they motivate us to act, they predict our behaviour. If we are feeling good, we are more likely to do good. (more on this in the days to come)
3)   There is a lot of research to suggest that contrary to what we sometimes believe, we make important decisions based on emotions rather than logic (just take a look at advertisements on TV – are they appealing to your logic or to your emotions?)
4)   The ability to manage our emotions predicts our success at work: people are usually hired for their knowledge and ability but they are usually fired for their lack of emotional management or the inability to get along with others. 
5)   Our emotions impact not only ourselves but also others around us. When we cannot regulate or manage our emotions, our relationships suffer. On the other hand, when we are good at managing ourselves and our emotional reactions, we can create a healthy emotional climate at home.
6)   Emotional management impacts physical health, mental health and longevity. Strong negative emotions such as anger, resentment and stress impact our immune system and leave us vulnerable to physical disease and to mental disorders. 

In short, when we are hijacked by our emotions, it impacts our ability to function at home and at work. Being able to regulate our emotions and deal with emotions of our loved ones, on the other hand, allows us to reach our full potential by focusing on things that matter to us. 

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