How to Control Your Emotions at Work

How to Control Your Emotions at Work

Women are naturally more emotional than men that is why keeping their feelings is rather difficult for them. However, strangely enough, the best place to learn to control your emotions is your work. Fear, sadness, joy, anger can destroy the measured office rhythm in no time and shake your career ladder considerably. How should emotional outbursts be handled at work? How can they be controlled?


The situation: your boss summons you and tells you that the report which you had to submit only in two days must be ready till the evening. You instantly feel panicked since the working day is over in two hours.

The mistake: to give in to panic and waste time on phrases like “I cannot!”, “There is not enough time!” “All is lost!” etc.

The right behaviour: Use stress as a stimulator. Stress is an often consequence of the situation you cannot control, but sometimes it is necessary to make you act. You need to accept the task however difficult it can be and get down to performing it without wasting a minute on excessive emotions. Ask yourself first: what can really be done in such a short time? If you are still stressed, try to cope with your feelings with the help of relaxing breathing: inhale carefully with your stomach, not your diaphragm, then hold your breath for a couple of seconds and exhale slowly. Imagine that your problems and unnecessary emotions leave you with every exhale and you become stronger with every inhale.


The situation: you have been giving your all and doing your best for the benefit of the company for the year. However, at the end of the year instead of the news of your promotion or bonus, you are informed that the quality of your work was not good enough and new achievements are expected of you next year. Disconcerted by this statement, you don’t know how to react and are ready to burst out in tears of offense and disappointment.

The mistake: to cry hoping for the head’s and employees’ compassion. Emotionally wrecked and with tears in your eyes, to go to your boss and ask to reconsider their decision.

The right behaviour: You must not let your emotions out in public. If you cannot control your tears, you’d better leave the room and cry in the ladies room. As soon as you console yourself, go to your boss and ask them calmly what exactly he or she didn’t like about your work and what you should pay attention to. Such a talk will encourage your boss to be more exact giving instructions and set you for the precise result. The point is to turn your emotions into a constructive dialogue.


The situation: You are going to make a presentation in a foreign language for important clients. You prepared perfectly, but start having doubts “what if”: the computer gets out of order, your vocabulary is not wide enough, the clients won’t like your appearance, etc.

The mistake: to focus on your fears, lose self-confidence and make a very slow and careful presentation in fear of saying something wrong or forgetting something.

The right behaviour: In psychologists’ opinion, anxiety, like stress, is a useful emotion. It helps you to predict and consider the situations when something may go wrong. Ask yourself: how can you lower the chances that your computer freezes in the middle of the meeting? What words may you forget? Do your best to fully protect yourself from the probable force majeure. Try to imagine and live your future presentation with the successful result. Or remember your past successful business meetings when you distinguished yourself. Can you feel how strong, talented and self-confident you were then? Keep these feelings and use them during the presentation.


The situation: you have been working very hard for two months to make a presentation for your customer. But a day before the arranged meeting your boss suddenly tells you that your colleague will make a report instead of you because the oral form of the presentation is more convenient for the client. And now all the honour that you expected to win will go to another person. You are overwhelmed with anger gradually turning into rage.

The mistake: turning red with emotions, you rush to the guileful colleague’s table and make a scene or go to your boss and tell them everything you think.

The right behaviour: Try to word the reasons for your anger in questions. Ask them your boss calmly, without outraging or raising the tone of your voice. Acting like this you will relieve yourself from emotions and be able to make a professional and fruitful dialogue or probably defend your right to make the presentation. Even if your presentation will be canceled, your self-control and professionalism will be noticed.


The situation: Hurray! Your boss calls an unscheduled meeting to announce to all the staff of the office about your new managing position. You are overwhelmed with joy and desire to embrace everyone, dance, sing and share this wonderful news with the whole world.

The mistake: to burst out with excessive joy and happiness.

The right behaviour: the Buddhists believe that even positive emotions may have a negative side. Your excessive delight may cause unnecessary jealousy of your colleagues. It can have a disastrous effect on your future relations and career. You should better react to the good news according to the rules of etiquette accepted in the office. Call your best friend to share the great news with him or her. And finally, instead of dwelling in euphoria, it is better to use your positive energy for making new plans and promotion.


The situation: During the planning meeting you are not satisfied with the way to solve a working issue, suggested by one of your colleagues and you decide to object and share your ideas. But the boss interrupts you with the words: “Thank you for your participation, Miss N, but please keep all your comments to yourself. Considering your poor quarterly reports, your suggestion can hardly be more worthy.” Red with shame and resentment, you keep silent.

The mistake: to go on the offensive or start explaining yourself. Most probably, the boss will not let this private conversation develop when solving the issues, important for the whole company, is at stake.

The right decision: try not to show that the boss’s words humiliated you or touched a nerve in you. In your mind, return to the main thing - the point of the meeting. After the meeting talk to your boss in private to ask him or her plainly about your faults. Hint him or her in a tactful and diplomatic manner that humiliation is not the best tactic of managing and doing business. It is important to choose appropriate words for such a talk, so your boss realizes his or her mistake.

In the end, we suggest you think over the famous American businessman and writer Robert Kiyosaki: “If you can’t control your emotions, they will control your money”.

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