10 ways you can master your emotions and boost your everyday energy

Our emotions play a huge role in our day to day lives. They guide us, allow us to understand one another, and enable us to understand ourselves. They also fuel us. Energy is the fuel with which everything is achieved, and there seems to be a direct relationship between energy levels and levels of accomplishment.
Austin Caffrey - Organisational Psychologist
November 22, 2018

Our emotions play a huge role in our day to day lives. They guide us, allow us to understand one another, and enable us to understand ourselves. They also fuel us. Energy is the fuel with which everything is achieved, and there seems to be a direct relationship between energy levels and levels of accomplishment.

Reserve your space at our Emotion Revolution webinar.

What is emotional energy?

There are three different kinds of energy, each of which is necessary for maximum performance:

  • Physical effort
  • Mental creativity
  • Emotional engagement

Each of these energies is different, but they are interrelated, and they depend on each other.

  • Physical energy is raw energy, coarse energy, bulk energy, what we call "meat-and-potatoes" energy. Your physical energy is what you use to do physical labor.
  • Mental energy is the energy of creativity, of problem solving and decision making.
  • Emotional energy is the source of enthusiasm and excitement. This is the energy that lends sparkle to the life of an individual. Largely, it is your emotional energy that makes life enjoyable for you. In fact, almost everything you say and do is determined in some way by an emotion, either positive or negative.

What are emotions?

There are typically three core components to an emotion:

  • The feeling - our individual experience or interpretation of a situation.
  • An external expression of what we're experiencing (facial, bodily, verbal or all three)
  • Physiological changes -for example changes in our heart rate, breathing and muscle tension. These physiological changes aren’t generally in our conscious control but we often become aware of their impact such as sweating, panting, muscle tension butterflies in the stomach etc.

Mastering these emotions can be key to unlocking a more energised, in control you. let's take a look at 10 ways you can achieve that.

1. Map out your emotional energy

Map out your emotional energy

What are emotional drains?

  • Excessive worrying, guilt, indecisiveness, over-committing and not setting healthy boundaries, holding on to loss

What are emotional gains?

  • Personalizing choices based on one’s needs and not on other’s expectations.
  • Choosing experiences both large and small that include positive affect - beauty, fun and companionship.
  • Learning how to say “no” without feeling guilty, attending actively to losses, followed by letting go and embracing life fully once again.

2. Understand Emotional ‘False Alarms’

What we feel is a result of our instant interpretations or judgement of an event or situation and these aren't always right.

3. Check in with your emotional energy levels

4. Understand your emotional energy is potentially unlimited

Physical energy is limited under the best of circumstances. But emotional energy is potentially unlimited. And unlike physical energy which runs down as we get older, emotional energy can increase the more you learn what works best for you. When you increase your emotional energy, it's amazing how your dreams become realities. And that's because obstacles lose the power to stop you.

5. Develop your emotional stamina

What do you do when you’re having a rough day?

Contrast this with what you do on a good day!

We’ve got to develop our emotional stamina—on those days when we feel the WORST, we need to be the MOST committed to our fundamentals, to try to balance the drains with the gains.

6. Listen to what your emotions are telling you

On their own, negative emotions are neither good or bad.

Emotions: identify your feelings

Listening: your emotions matter

7 & 8. Ditch the emotional energy drains and ditch the Energy Vampires

  • Know one when you see one. Notice how you feel about your interactions with them – you may not find anything strange at first but some of the aspects mentioned above are likely to manifest fairly quickly.
  • Limit your contact. Once you've identified such people, limit the amount of time you spend with them. If you can't detach completely, as in the case of family members or coworkers, set firm limits. For example, for those who are intrusive or overly dramatic and end up consuming a lot of your time with their tales of woe or displays of theatrics, you should start off conversations with something like, "I only have a few minutes before I have to [fill in the blank]..." Once that time is up, politely disengage.
  • Don't get pulled in. No matter how much you might like to think or hope you will be able to fix their problems, you won't. Chronically negative people will either resist your interventions or create new crises in their lives for you to "fix”. Keep a positive attitude and surround yourself with positive people who leave you feeling upbeat and energized.

9. Is perfectionism draining your emotional energy?

Perfectionism involves a tendency to set standards that are so high that they either cannot be met, or are only met with great difficulty. Trying to be perfect is also likely to make you feel stressed and maybe even disappointed with yourself much of the time because you are not able to meet your standards easily or at all.

Over time, you may even start to believe that you are not as capable as others. Therefore, it is worthwhile to consider loosening up your standards a bit to ease the stress and anxiety you may feel from trying so hard to be perfect.

10. Get in the driving seat of your emotions

  • Pay attention to how different emotions feel in your body: Our physical sensations are actually often the first signal.
  • Pinpoint the intensity of the emotion: Use a scale from 1 to 10 to pinpoint the intensity of the emotion you’re experiencing. Doing so puts you back in the driver’s seat of your emotions, and helps you determine an appropriate course of action.
  • Try grounding & centering techniques:  If your emotion feels too big, use a technique that grounds and centers you.
  • Name it to tame it (assign characters): Assigning characters to emotions can help us understand the real message these feelings seek to convey. For instance, anger tries to alert us that something is wrong and we need to take action. Its function is to protect us.
  • Stay with emotions to explore: When we try to get rid of our emotions or ignore them, we miss out on their meaningful messages.

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