When we allow others to control our mood or state by how they talk to us, behave towards us or what they do to us, we hand away control of our life. We cannot control them, we can control our response to them.
Make instead, a conscious decision as to what state of mind you need for each activity in your day. Managing your state is important for many reasons. At work we cannot function effectively if we are at the mercy of unpredictable mood swings; our colleagues wouldn’t know how to respond to us and we’d be unable to cope with pressure. It could certainly be a barrier to advancement. There are also serious mental and physical health consequences when we allow our emotional state to govern us. High blood pressure, risks of heart attacks, digestion problems and headaches as well as depression and anxiety can also result from the pressure of not being in control of our emotional state. Lastly, healthy relationships rely on the ability to control our emotional state so we can communicate well and express our feelings.
“Leading starts with the ability to lead ourselves. To do this we need first and foremost to be able to manage our emotional state. If we feel irritation, guilt, anger, frustration, doubt or self-consciousness, the result will be less than we are capable of and is unlikely to be a win/win. In contrast, feelings of ease, confidence, forgiveness, acceptance, inspiration and amusement are states that are much more likely to lead to us giving of our best, whatever the context.” (Sue Knight)
Now let’s PLAY!
How would you like to have a play with your state?
In NLP we consider the mind and the body to be one. They directly influence each other and if you play a sport you will be very aware of this. Exercise is the best way to improve your mood as you change almost every part of your physiology and by focusing on the exercise and the external, you take your mind off the internal thoughts and feelings.
So let’s start with making a few changes to the outside and notice what that does inside. A quick and easy way of doing that is to write alongside each one a score of 1-10 for your happiness level.
- Look up
- Look down
- Stand up
- Jog on the spot
- Think about something sad
- Think about a happy moment
- Think about when you did a great piece of work that you felt proud of
- Think about when you were a child
- Recall a sporty success
This extract was taken from Judy Bartkowiak's book 'Secrets of the NLP Masters'.