Self Control for Emotional Wisdom
I am, indeed, a king,
because I know how to rule myself.—Pietro Aretino
that we master our emotions. This mastery enables us to channel both
positive and negative emotions in a productive way and enables us to learn
and gain from our emotions rather than be burdened by them.
With self-control, we can
both anticipate and use our emotional reactions to maximize our
effectiveness. Angry outbursts are most often associated with a person who
lacks self control, but emotional self-control is much broader than
controlling our anger.
- Self-control also
means finding productive ways to address self-doubt and other
feelings, such as fear, that can be destructive to achieving our life’s
goals and objectives.
- Self-control requires
us to know how to express emotions appropriately —both positive
emotions and negative emotions.
-Self-control takes our
self-awareness to the next step. Self-awareness allows us to
understand our limitations; self-control allows us to address them.
-Self-control is about
selecting the words, appropriate time, and demeanor that will give you
the results you seek.
-It is the means to a
planned and thoughtful emotional climate. If you want to have a discussion
with your teenager, you can’t begin with your finger waving in the air and
the words “I told you so.” “When I was your age,” will also lead you to a
dead end. There will likely be no discussion. “When I was doing your job”
will likely have the similar effect of killing any type of discussion in
the workplace. These phrases do not invite discussion, they imply lecture.
What outcome do you desire—a lecture or a discussion? It’s not about what
you want to blurt, it’s about how you can craft your words to gain the
desired outcome. That’s not manipulation; that’s effective living.
I often think about
emotional climate in terms of a music metaphor.
-What type of music do you intend to play in the background?
-That music gives clues to the emotional climate that you create.
-Do you know people who are always playing the blues with whining steel
guitars or droning violins?
-Do you know others who are playing “Flight of the Bumblebee?”
- How about others who always seem to be dancing to polka music?
- Still others who sound like background music to a good war flick or
- Self-control allows us to decide the emotional tone rather than have a
station stuck that we can’t seem to change.
-Crafting the emotional climate takes skill and practice.
Sunanda Anubhav Arora