Managing emotions at work is a task encompassed within “emotional intelligence” and, therefore, interpersonal. It is a set of skills that can be trained and particularly relevant when we relate to others, including those with whom we share an office and tasks.
Managing emotions at work implies proper management of our emotional sphere when we are engaged in our profession, but also adequate management of the emotional world of our colleagues, whether these are our bosses, peers, or subordinates.
Managing emotions at work is also about expressing them
What do we and what don’t we allow when managing our emotions at work? Some people have a conflictive relationship with some emotions due to deficiencies in their emotional development or the biographical experiences they have gone through. This makes them have difficulty pinpointing certain emotions, expressing them openly and honestly, or acknowledging them to themselves. Some people do not handle fear well and become fearless or even reckless in order to not experience it.
Others do not allow themselves to get angry or sad, perhaps because, during their personal development, they learned that these are not appropriate emotions and that one should try to avoid them, or at least not show them to others.
On the other hand, just as there are emotions we do not allow ourselves to feel or share and we try to deny or disconnect from them, the opposite can happen with other emotions. They occupy a predominant place in our lives: surely you know someone you always associate with anger or bad moods, who is afraid of everything, or who tends to feel guilty about everything.
Fortunately, there are also people in whom emotions such as joy or pride have a vital weight and can transmit it to those around them, for example, at work.
In short, managing emotions at work involves becoming aware of the different layers of our emotional world. In addition to knowing which emotions have an enormous weight in our life because they will significantly influence our overall level of well-being and our interpersonal relationships.
Handling emotional exposure well in the workplace
How does the verbal and nonverbal expression of our emotions affect others? We should all be aware that, whether we want to or not, our moods are transmitted voluntarily and involuntarily to the outside world. Others observe and listen to us. They sense how we may feel even if they have little information about it, even if they may sometimes be wrong.
We do the same thing: we are not immune to the emotional state of the people around us, for example, our co-workers, but we can detect some of their emotions and, of course, be influenced by them just as they can change their mood by seeing ours. There is not much of a problem transmitting positive emotions (those we experience as pleasant). However, we must be careful with negative emotions (those that are unpleasant to feel) to avoid spreading negativity at work.
Guidelines for managing emotions at work
We are all role models for others regarding appropriate or inappropriate ways of expressing our emotions. That is why it is so important that we have good social skills at work. In this sense, managers and team coordinators have a special responsibility since one of their – often neglected – roles is to model good work practices, healthy habits at work, and, therefore, appropriate ways of managing emotions at work.
For this reason, if they encounter themselves or their team any significant difficulty in managing emotions at work, they have the possibility of seeking advice from those who understand these things: psychologists who are experts in well-being at work. To do so, they can – and should – have an Employee Assistance Program that includes these issues among its objectives or use an emotional well-being program for companies such as the one provided by ifeel.
Improving emotional well-being in companies
At ifeel, we want to boost employees’ and their companies’ well-being at work by helping them create work environments in which the management of emotions is constructive, mature, and favors everyone’s performance.
Our psychologists have created an emotional well-being program for companies to achieve this. Through this collaboration, your company’s human resources managers will be able to receive personalized, data-driven advice on how to improve their teams’ psychological well-being. Moreover, this program provides employees with complete mental health care services structured at different levels according to their needs. Try our program now to see how it can help you.
Visit our Resources section, where you will find Podcasts on different topics (such as the employee experience or how to set your career goals), HR Guides, or Interviews with leading HR managers. In addition, you will be able to access a Psychosocial Risk Factors Template, which will help you comply with the Labor Inspection requirements.
We hope this post on managing emotions at work has given you good ideas to facilitate fulfilling your tasks. Contact us to learn more about how our emotional well-being program for companies works. Simply get in touch, and we’ll get back to you as soon as possible.