Six Ways To Regain Emotional Control In The Workplace

5 min read

Struggling to find that workplace sweet spot between being true to yourself and leaving your emotions at the front door? As we enter a new work season, life coach Noona Nafousi sets out the rules

A normal and necessary component of human conduct is the experience of a whole range of varying feelings and emotions. They are what allow us to connect with others on a profound and significant level and are the foundation of our humanity. However, if we give in to the temptation of letting our feelings rule us, they have the potential to become a barrier to both our personal and professional growth.

This is especially true for women in business, where it is common practice to assume that they should leave their feelings at the door and act like emotionless robots instead. The good news is that it is feasible to control your emotions without numbing yourself completely to your own feelings in the process. Here is some actionable advice that can help you achieve emotional balance without letting go of your humanity in the process.

Recognise and Accept Your Feelings

The first thing you need to do to get emotional control is to recognise the feelings you’re experiencing. Especially when we are in a workplace that requires us to be professional, many of us have been conditioned to repress or dismiss our emotions. Again, this is really true for women. However, suppressing your feelings might cause them to build up to the point where they end up exploding over something that we normally would be able to handle. Instead, it is important to recognise and name your feelings and admit that they are a gift that can be used for powerful lessons.

This does not mean that you are required to take action on every feeling that you experience; rather, it refers to the fact that you acknowledge the existence of those feelings and grant yourself permission to feel them and listen to what they are trying to tell you. One helpful tool for emotional awareness is to pay attention to the physical location of emotions within the body, as well as any associated colour, shape and size, and then inquire as to the message it may be conveying.

Identify Your Triggers

After you have acknowledged and listened to your feelings, the next step is to locate the things that set them off. The situations, people or events that have the potential to set off an emotional reaction in you are referred to as triggers. If you are able to identify the factors that set off your emotional outbursts, you will be in a better position to plan for their occurrence and come up with efficient coping mechanisms.For instance, if you are aware that a certain colleague consistently gets under your skin, get really curious about what it is exactly that is causing these feelings. Is it the tone of their voice or is it that they are acting in a way that goes against your values? Or could it be that they remind you of someone, causing a link to past negative feelings? Curiosity is key to uncovering emotional triggers.

Putting Mindfulness Into Practice

The practice of mindfulness is a highly effective method for gaining emotional mastery. Being mindful means being present in the here and now and observing your thoughts, feelings and physical sensations without passing judgment on them. You can become more aware of your current emotional state and learn to successfully regulate your emotions if you consistently engage in the practice of mindfulness. You can train yourself to be more mindful by engaging in a variety of activities such as yoga, deep breathing exercises and meditation.

Meredith Mickelson photographed by Susan Buth for MOJEH 108

Train Yourself To Be Emotionally Intelligent

Emotional intelligence refers to a person’s capacity to be aware of and in control of their own feelings, as well as to comprehend and empathise with the experiences and feelings of others. Everyone needs to work on developing their emotional intelligence, but it is especially important for women in business to tap into this as women are naturally more empathetic and are 16 times more intuitive than men. By developing your emotional intelligence, you will be able to better understand the triggers that cause you and others to react in certain ways, as well as improve your ability to communicate and form healthy relationships not just with others but with yourself.

Discover Constructive Ways to Express Feelings

It’s not healthy to deal with your feelings by stuffing them down and ignoring them. Find constructive ways to vent rather than suppress them. This could be chatting to a trusted friend or co-worker, taking five minutes in a meeting room alone, journalling, going for a walk during lunch or calling someone you trust and just having a good old rant. Finding healthy ways to express your feelings might help you process them and move forward in a positive manner.

Set Boundaries

Establishing limits and limits of behaviour is essential for maintaining emotional control. This is really important for women, as they tend to lean towards people pleasing and putting others’ needs before their own. Boundaries are the guidelines you create for yourself and others regarding what is acceptable behaviour and what is not. By setting boundaries, you can preserve your mental well-being and prevent people from taking advantage of you.

For example, if you are constantly asked to carry out tasks that are not in your remit and you are sacrificing your own work and mental health by taking it on then now is the time to start saying no. A good way to assess this is to notice if you are having to say no to yourself over and over again in order to say yes to others. If you then feel resentful towards them for asking you, this is a sure sign that you need to strengthen your boundaries.

Life Coach Noona Nafousi

In conclusion, regulating your emotions does not mean suppressing them or becoming heartless. Instead, it means noticing and accepting your feelings, understanding your triggers, practicing mindfulness, developing emotional intelligence, finding healthy outlets for expression and setting boundaries. By following these practical recommendations, you may attain emotional balance without surrendering your humanity, empowering you to flourish in your personal and professional life.

In addition, when you can start creating space to listen and identify your emotions you will become better at allowing them pass through you in a healthy way, with ease and grace. Follow Noona on Instagram here

Read Next: Why Women Need To Stop Being Embarrassed To Talk About Money

  • Words by Noona Nafousi