Managing your emotions is what is expected from us in our daily interaction with people, especially when communication becomes tense. Vincent Van Gogh once captured the science of emotion in one line: “Let’s not forget that the little emotions are the great captains of our lives and we obey them without realizing it (1889)”. This quote sums up the great impact of emotions in the many different aspects of life, and yes, many of us do not understand why we feel the way we feel most of the time and this make it difficult managing our emotions.
It is even more amazing when we are appalled when others do not understand our emotions. This is the main reason why their are so much dysfunctions in families. It makes it difficult for healthy relationships and positive mental capacity to strive in situations of confusion and misunderstanding. Emotions affect our lives, our physical health, attitudes, and even our mental and emotional development.
There are many different types of emotions, some are beneficial while some create disorder in our lives. The destructive and chaotic forming emotions can be classified as what we know as the seven deadly sins: gluttony, lust, avarice, envy, anger, sloth, and pride. They harm our emotional states because they create negative emotions that can destroy important family relationships, mental and physical well-being. Therefore, we ought to avoid these states of emotions as best as we can.
Thankfully, there are more positive emotional states. These emotional states are generally recognized as the nine fruits of the Holy Spirits, and they are: love (the most important of them all that flow from God), joy, peace, long suffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. These emotional states help us control our emotions, aid our mental development, and ensure a healthy and overall physical well-being.
Managing Your Emotions
It is therefore important that we recognize the fact that our feelings affect how we act and think. It is equally important for us to learn to manage our feelings as this skill will help us manage the problems life throw at us in many ways. Good management of emotions reflect our skills in expressing ourselves and our empathy towards others. This is referred to as emotional intelligence, which is the ability to manage ones emotions and mood so as to make informed decisions, judgments, and accept others point of view. This is why we should seek to improve our emotional intelligence. (If you wish to have a better idea as to your ability to manage your emotions, or emotional intelligence, you are encouraged to take this simple emotional intelligence test).
Managing your emotions is not difficult. There is a connection between the way we feel, think, and do. It is this connection that we use to help us deal with our emotions. If we understand and use this connection wisely we can make great strides in developing our relationships with others and improving the way we think about ourselves. In other words, we develop our interpersonal and intrapersonal communication skills.
Managing emotions entails three steps.
First, we must share our feelings with others. This allows us to release vent up energy, but the words we choose must be within the boundaries of positive emotional states. We convert feelings into words so they can be better understood by all involved. This stage encourages meaningful conversations; it does not deny feelings which, indisputably, makes us human.
Learn Effects of Emotions
Secondly, we must learn how these emotions affect thoughts and actions. Feelings have the same effect as words on people. They can create a smorgasbord of emotions that reflect the type of relationships individuals share with others. This stage helps us identify our true emotions towards others. However, we must try to be as unbiased as possible to identify our true nature and how it has affected us and the relationships we are in.
Finally, we must seek to develop skills to help us understand these emotions. This means that we must be judgmental on our true nature in order to have some effect on our relationship with others.
We cannot avoid our emotional nature, but we can recognize its effects. Managing our emotions can do wonders for us in relationships and in accomplishing any type of goal we set for ourselves. Life experience becomes fruitful and positive once we learn to manage our emotions.
Note: This article is the first part in a three part series on the Effects of Emotions.
I invite you to tell us how you have developed your skills in managing your emotions.