How often has someone’s negative mood derailed you at work? Your upbeat feelings are affected by a colleague’s emotions within seconds, but you can manage this!
Stay Cool, Calm, and Collected: Managing Emotions in the Workplace
We all have challenging days. As much as we might hate to admit it, we have all had this effect on coworkers at one time or another.
We’ve all experienced that one individual in the office who rants about the traffic on the way to work, the slow elevator, or the lack of parking. Whether they realize it or not, they're pushing their negative feelings onto everyone else. They're negatively affecting the entire workspace. This behaviour demonstrates just how contagious people’s emotions can be. This phenomenon is known as “emotional contagion."
Understanding the impact emotional contagion can have on others is so important. Our emotions are a significant driver of our behaviour. They're also hard-wired, so we react before we have a chance to respond.
Don’t Permit Emotional Contagion To Impact Your Mood Negatively.
The key is becoming aware of how your emotions drive your behaviour! This self-awareness skill helps improve nearly every aspect of your life. I like to focus on it because I see time and time again just how powerful it can be.
And keep in mind emotional contagion isn't always a bad thing! When the shared emotion is positive, it can be beneficial. But when it is negative, it can become a problem. We only want to catch good moods, but bad moods sure like to intrude. That's why it’s crucial to arm yourself with techniques to prevent emotional contagion from impacting you.
In this LinkedIn post, I also talk more about emotional contagion if you'd like to explore this topic further.
How To Control Your Emotions At Work?
As you become more self-aware, you’ll understand your emotions and feelings and how they affect your mood. The key is to learn to recognize your feelings as they occur and the emotions within them. When you acknowledge that a bad mood can impact your outlook and emotions, you can learn to manage them.
Without a doubt, managing your emotions will make you more successful. In fact, checking your emotions and asking why you feel the way you do or what made you react to a situation is essential to healthy self-management.
Consider this quote from Joshua Freedman: “Moods are not the same as emotions or feelings, moods are more generalized. They’re not tied to a specific incident, but a collection of inputs. Moods can last minutes, hours, probably even days.”
Don’t Be Fooled By A Bad Mood…
A bad mood can create an exaggerated feeling of dissatisfaction with your job, colleagues, and accomplishments. If this happens, identify the negative state and don’t let that lead to errors in judgment. Often, bad moods tend to make you focus on the negative aspects of your life instead of considering all of the good things. A positive attitude is essential in this situation, as that’s paramount to overall happiness.
Tips To Control Your Emotions & Change Your Negative Mood Into A Positive One
- Redirect your brain to focus on the positive. And remember, there’s always a positive if you take the time to find it.
- Use positive self-talk. Tell yourself that deep down, things are okay. Take a look at these empowering strategies to help your negative self-talk disappear.
- Pay very close attention to people who trigger your emotions. They can create more drama and prolong your negative mood if you allow them to. This is a form of emotional hijacking. Your ability to understand and control your emotions will empower you to make decisions that elevate your confidence.
- Don’t make important decisions while in a negative mood.
- Bad moods will pass if you allow them to.
- Allow yourself to accept the feeling and move on.
It is critical to reflect on your mood, but not dwell on it. Let it go and free yourself of the negativity! Once you control your emotions, you can improve your mood and moods around you. Be sure to check out many more motivational blogs here. If you’d like to take an emotional intelligence assessment, check this out.
This article was originally published on December 1, 2018, and has been updated (September 2023).
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