5 Simple Ways to Control your Emotions

So today I want to share a few excerpts from my latest read, Mindset by Carol S Dweck.
We always strive to gain greater self-control in all situations. by using these expert tips and advice backed by Scientific Research a few of you may gain a better insight into Self Control.

There are many things we lack in our lives but self-control, tops the list for most of us. In a research conducted in US, people were asked to list their character strengths and self-control came last.

Self-control is our ability to control our feelings, emotions and how we react to them. We see public example of a lapse in self-control when the political leaders make derogatory remarks and then apologize publicly.

Scientists are discovering the importance of self-control as a force we can tap into to have a more successful and satisfying life. But self-control is a limited resource entity that is depleting with the modernization. When we exercise control in one situation, we’re less likely to keep our cool the next time we’re faced with a situation that requires self-control.

Still if we put our mind into it we can do a lot to mitigate willpower depletion and enhance our ability to exercise self-control, including these five tips.

1. Visualizing the big picture.

A study shows that abstract and global or high-level thinking promotes self-control success. That is, people are more likely to exercise self-control when they see the proverbial forest beyond the trees and when they don’t get bogged down by specific minutiae.

For example, when working on a long-term project, it’s easy to get frustrated by the multitude of small steps required to get you there. Instead, periodically reminding yourself and others on the team of the end goal serves to promote self-control by preventing discouragement.

2. Knowing and recognizing the repercussions of inadequate sleep.

A study done in University of Washington, reported in Harvard Business Review, indicates that sleep deprivation drains glucose in the prefrontal cortex, thereby depleting the fuel needed for self-control. Sleep restores it. This was found to make a difference at work the next day between ethical and unethical behavior, such as cheating by falsifying receipts. Those who slept six hours or less were more likely to engage in deviant work behaviors than those who slept more than six hours.

The lead researcher Christopher M. Barnes, says ” We need to give sleep more respect. Executives and managers should keep in mind that the more they push employees to work late, come to the office early, and answer emails and calls at all hours, the more they invite unethical behavior to creep in.”

Tired workers are not good for any organization.

3. Relaxing is good.

Popular views of self-control are that we should try to control impulses, fight temptations and actively exercise willpower.
Nothing could be further from the truth, it seems.

A new study done by University of Illinois, found that the people suggesting action words, “get on with it,” were more likely to make impulsive decisions that undermine their long-term goals.
In contrast, with those who used “relax” or “take a break” found it easier to avoid impulsive decisions. Dr. Dolores Albarracín, “suggests that the relaxed state is better at inhibiting the pull of temptations.” This may very well have some impact in how we manage people. Pushing them to “move on” may result in more risky behavior or impulsive decisions.

4. Including mini bouts of exercise in daily routine.

Most of us have limited time to undertake a full exercise program, the good news is that, when it comes to self-control, short bouts of moderately intense exercise is all we need to boost our strength in this area. The pre-frontal cortex is responsible for self-control, and research reported in Science Daily shows that short bouts of exercise result in increased blood and oxygen flow to the pre-frontal cortex, which may explain the boost in self-control ability. No matter how busy you are, plan to include a short burst of exercise in your daily routine.    

5. Get digital self-control support.

In present day life no one can manage without digital interaction, and how draining and energy depleting they are we all know. Can we completely be off them, practically not possible. But can we use them to our benefits, according to me absolutely. How, by using the Apps that keep us committed to any goal. For example Gym Pact to ensure, never to miss another workout, as well as other similar apps to track our workouts and Mint.com or Expense Manager to keep track of your spending and help you make better money decisions or the relaxing app calm.

6.Self Awareness or knowing a bit more about self.

Emotional self-control, or impulse control, is key of emotional intelligence. Know yourself so you can manage your emotions and impulses in a better way. For example, Are you in the habit of reacting easily and hastily to issues? Once you get start, do you find it difficult to stop talking? Are you able to stay sober and positive in stressful circumstances? Can you exercise patience in annoying situations? The ability to keep disruptive emotions and impulses in check is the mark of a seasoned leader.

Self-awareness precedes self-management. Here are two emotional intelligence assessments to help you increase your self-knowledge in this area, the Emotional Quotient Inventory and the Emotional Competence Inventory.

You can also find out how you score on self-control measures by taking the free online, VIA Inventory of Strengths—it’s a psychological assessment of 24-character strengths, one of which is self-control, it will give you a better insight into self-awareness too.

Let’s try putting some aspect of our lives on default mode so we don’t’ have to make too many unnecessary decisions. Do you know why Steve Jobs always dressed up in Levis 501 jeans and black turtlenecks?
Or President Obama wears only blue or grey suits?

I found out recently they did that to conserve their energies. Because they have too many important issues to put their mind into … we need to focus on what is more important for us and take action accordingly…that may be key to Self-Control.

I hope this write up brings some clarity on why self-control is absolutely important for leading a successful life.

If any of you are interested in finding out more on the VIA Test or any other information don’t hesitate to connect with me.

Meanwhile have a wonderful life.

Thanks & Be Well.
Reenu Sahore

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