Your emotions are a result of thinking a particular thought. A thought will trigger a series of similar thoughts and internal dialogue that will cause the emotional state. The state that I am referring to here and the ones you will want to take control of are those undesirable states like,rage,anger,overwhelm,fear,helplessness, and other emotional states that you may experience regularly and are hindering your progress.
Motions Equals Emotion
The fastest way I know of to change an unwanted emotional state is to start moving. That’s right,move! The next time you are feeling low,get up and go for a walk,run,or swim. This will help you to feel better and increase your mental capacity and creativity.Of course,I’m not referring to clinical depression. If you suffer from constant depression,please seek professional help.
I have found that when I’m feeling low and I take ten or fifteen minutes walk,I feel much better.Physical movement will always have a positive effect on your emotional state.
Prior to experiencing any emotional state,something happens in our minds.We think a thought,which then acts as trigger for the state to be born. One thought leads to another in rapid succession until,before we even realize it,we are in the undesirable state.
Supposing you are driving down the highway,and suddenly,out of nowhere,someone cuts right in front of you,almost taking out your car bumper. Has this ever occurred to you? Typically, when this occurs,you think something like, ” What a fool. How can he cut me off like that?” This leads to a series of similar thoughts until your mood is totally disrupted. If the thoughts continue,it will result in a state of Road Rage. While Road Rage is nothing than an extreme reaction to an event that occurred on a road or highway,It has resulted in serious problems,even death,for those who allowed themselves to be ruled by its negative energy.
In the heat of the moment,it may be difficult to think rationally. In this situation,you can shift your focus and look in a different way. This will break the pattern long enough for you to you to shift to a more rational thought.
Furthermore,in such situation,when someone cuts in front of your carcar,instead of engaging in a tirade,you could marvel at the person’s uncouth manner. You could shift your thinking to asking yourself on what may have prompted someone to act in such a manner. Perhaps,he had an emergency on his plate. Considering this thought of shiftng your feelings from anger to compassion,will eliminate rage and bring you to a state of calmness regardless of what was going on around you.
Daniel Goleman puts it aptly.He said, “If you are tuned out of your own emotions,you will be poor at reading them in other people.”
Anchoring Yourself With Music
Music is a powerful emotional anchor which you can employ to create a desirable emotional or mental state. One of the most powerful ritual that can raisee your energy level is music. I keep some specific songs in my car CD changer to play while I’m behind the wheels. Whenever I listened to those songs,I immediately connect with the intense energy and peak emotion I experienced when I had to take some important life-changing decisions.
If you were to return home from work physically drained out and you wanted nothing to do but to sit and watch the television and I walked in,handed you $50,000 to go out and buy whatever you wanted,provided you went out right away. Do you think you would muster the energy to do it? Obviously! You would immediately forget your present state and instead, jump up and ready to hit the road.
The question is,are you actually as tired as you claim? More often than not,your tired state is a mental drain not a physical state which can be immediately altered by switching your emotional state.
Sometimes,you can employ a technique known as a “pattern interrupt.” This is merely an action that causes you to break your thought pattern long enough to susbsitute a new thought. It comes from the science of Neuro Linguistic Programming (NLP) developed by Richard Bandler and John Grindler.
Let’s say,as a sales person, you nurse the fear of cold calling on telephone. Before the fear sets in,while you are close to making a call,devise a technique which will interrupt your pattern and break the fear long enough for you to simply grab the phone and dial the number.
You may do something like jump up and down and yell “yes” or raise your arms in the air over your head kind of like the way boxing champions do when they win a bout. Any physical action will usually interrupt your thought pattern long enough for you to begin the action. Once you begin,the fear usually subsides.
Remember,you can only think one thought at a time. You can use this same technique in your relationships with your spouse,family,or co-workers. For example,you with your spouse could agree that,at the start of an argument, before either party goes into their arguing ritual,you will simply hold each other’s hands. It’s surprising how it is almost impossible to have a heated argument while holding the other person’s hand. The intensity of hand holding connects you at a much deeper level and the anger tends to dissipate. Next time you feel you with your spouse are about to get into a heated discussion,take his or her hand and take a few deep breaths.You will find yourselves becoming calmer and feel more connected to each other.This makes it more likely that you will find an amicable solution in your differences.
Daniel Goleman in one of his best seller, Emotional Intelligence :Why it can matter more than IQ. said, “If your emotional abilities aren’t in hand,if you don’t have self-awareness,if you are unable to manage your distressing emotions,if you can’t have empathy and have effective relationships,then,no matter how smart you are,you are not going to get very far.”