Why Let Emotional Autonomy Mislead You? Instead, consider

November 7, 2021

Last week, three distinct clients shared the challenges they're having as a result of their hate for or distress about someone with whom they work. The three examples had quite diverse conditions, but the end result was the same: the clients' unhappiness with their situations prompted them to behave in counterproductive ways on a regular basis.

The customers' replies were not smart or astute enough to move things forward. Instead, they avoided problems in ways that permitted them to get out of control. They made bad decisions, incurred needless money in the process, or resorted to defensive bluster intended to put others "in their place."

However, these were not essential replies; there are more effective options.

Even if you don't like everyone you work with, you may be forced to work with them

If you're having trouble dealing with folks you don't like, have a look at these strategies for striking a better balance. These options may help you remain on track, avoid harming your team or organization, and bring out the best in both the circumstance and the individuals involved.

Begin by observing your current emotions. What sensations do you have in your body?

Are you experiencing unusual bodily sensations as a result of a challenging coworker or a stressful set of circumstances? Perhaps your jaw is clenched, your stomach is churning, or you find yourself clearing your throat over and again.

Next, figure out how you're feeling. You could sense that you're apprehensive, tense, or frustrated, which are common manifestations of apprehension about what might go wrong or anger over what has occurred.

Take note of your sentiments; there's no need to resist them or get worked up about them, but it's also pointless to pretend that they don't exist.

Keep in mind that you are more than your emotions

Only you have power over yourself. You may be able to push someone else out or make them do something they didn't want to do if you have enough organizational authority, but it's not up to you how they feel about it.

Refocus your attention away from your emotions and onto your actions. Even if you're annoyed or irritated, you can still act professionally, treat people with compassion and fairness, and analyze all of the relevant advantages and downsides before making a business choice.

To adjust your reaction, reframe your thinking

"I'm so fed up with the way things work here that I just can't take it!" I thought. Consider how a reversed viewpoint may appear if you say something like, "I can't stand working with that annoying person any longer!" and notice your emotional response.

Maybe it's something along the lines of, "I'm so frustrated because I really want this project to succeed." What can I do to assist this endeavor succeed if I zoom out to a broader image or look a bit farther into the future? How can I zoom back in to better the specific condition that's troubling me now since I've found these problems — because this project is what I actually care about?"

Rather than waiting for things to become better, have difficult dialogues

It's important to confront the issue with inquiry and compassion if you see a negative pattern developing — and if you've witnessed a behavior at least three times, it's likely to be a pattern. Keep in mind that the other person is unlikely to be aware of your feelings about the situation or your assumptions about their motivations or wants.

One of the benefits of having a difficult talk rather than avoiding it is that, in addition to perhaps fixing the situation, you may absolve yourself of any responsibility for any bad effects of your avoidance.

All of those stresses may be relieved by having a serious, professional discourse about what's going on and what others need to be able to perform better. You may still experience difficulties, but you and the other person will be able to better grasp them if you work together.

A dialogue will offer you a half-decent chance that the situation will become less vexing, and the other person will begin to feel more like a colleague rather than an adversary.

Thanks to Liz Kislik at Business 2 Community whose reporting provided the original basis for this story.

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