Wouldn't it be helpful in our workplace and customer relationships if we handled all situations and circumstances objectively (considering the facts) versus subjectively (with emotional ties)? We could improve teamwork, staff motivation, employee engagement and bottom-line results; maintain healthy human relationships and employee harmony; understand and respect others easier, concern ourselves less with office politics, and work together and communicate more effectively if we just cut to the chase of dealing with the issues at hand, rather than becoming sidelined by the symptoms of our own emotions.
The sixth principle of my personal development program, The Greatest You, encourages the mastery of your emotions. Emotions are triggered by the right side of the brain, which is much quicker to act than the logical left-brain. When something stimulates us emotionally, we naturally feel the results immediately: anger, frustration, joy, or pride, depending on the nature of the stimulus. Given time, the logical side of the brain will kick in and help us rationalize the trigger. Mastering our emotions involves first being aware of emotional triggers and then being able to choose a response logically.
The most liberating fact I have ever learned and applied is that we can choose our response to anything. Between any stimulus and the response to it lies our greatest freedom - the freedom to choose how we want to respond. More than walking, talking bundles of conditioned reflexes, we are entitled to think and choose. Isn’t that totally liberating? No one can make you feel or act in any way, unless you allow it.
How do you make the right choice? You need to know what you want and expect from your own behaviour first. For example, if you want to have respectful, effective communication in your workplace, first recognize that although you may initially experience negative emotions like anger or frustration due to the fast-acting right brain, your chosen response can be something positive – something that will gain results toward a more respectful workplace.
This ability to choose positive responses is also known as taking the high road. We need to first give out what we want to receive back, and take responsibility (or ‘response-ability’) for making relationships work with customers and in the workplace. These are skills well worth exercising and strengthening.
Best wishes for taming the tiger and choosing to respond toward a better workplace.