Emotional Energy? Really? Yes.
Not only does emotional energy exists, but it is also one of the most important forms of human energy!
We tend to think that energy is something physical. We are surrounded by mechanical or electrical energy devices like cars or PCs. Therefore, we think that our body energy is also purely physical.
However, some researchers, like Mira Kirshenbaum, claim that we source more energy from our emotions than from the physical parts of our bodies.
Hard to believe?
Read on to find out: what emotional energy is and how your emotional energy makes you happier in life, more productive and successful at work.
What Is the Emotional Energy?
Obviously, emotional energy is the human energy we source from our emotions. The word emotion comes from the Latin “energy in motion”.
The reality around us is factual and unemotional. You label reality with subjective emotions originating in your brain. Thus, the emotional energy is controlled by our brains. By tapping to certain emotions, we can significantly increase or decrease our body energy level.
In other words, some of our emotional states have the potential to boost tour emotional energy or to drain it.
To better understand it, let’s start with a short exercise:
Do you have days when you are on the top of the world and days when everything sucks? Please think about your life experiences in the past (jobs, relationships, etc.), which back then seemed to be a matter of life and death to you. But from today’s perspective, they do not seem to have been that important.
Do you remember what you were feeling on those days? What were the underlying emotions?
Do you remember the passion, power, and drive you felt on the happy days? And the apathy, impotence and laziness on the bad ones?
There is no doubt that we are extremely energetic on our happy days and fatigued on the bad ones. Some events have more potential to generate positive emotions, and some tend to cause negative thoughts.
If a relative dies, you have been just fired, or you got divorced, it is very difficult to find positive feelings in ourselves. In the same way, it is so easy to be euphoric when you get promoted or have won the lottery.
As we mentioned, the events themselves have no energetic effect on us. Our energy is increased or drained solely by the feelings and sensations we generate in our brains. What’s more, our states of high and low energy, as identified in our pasts, had nothing to do with our physical form.
What Are The Main Emotions and How Do They Affect Emotional Energy?
(Manager Up’s Emotional Energy Framework)
Do you still have doubts about how emotions affect our body engines? In order to help you to maneuver in your emotional jungle, we have developed a simple framework.
We have revised all the key emotions we experience every day at work and home and their potential influence on our emotional energy. We found out that there are four possible results of our emotions.
When you experience intense positive emotions like passion or enthusiasm, then your energy will boost. But, intense negative emotions (rage or grief) will drain your emotional powerhouse.
When your emotions are positive, but their intensity is low, you put your body into recharging mode. Negative emotions of low intensity cause an energetic shutdown, which leads to procrastination.
Your objective should be to generate positive emotions of different intensities.
Why Is It Important to Master Emotional Energy?
1. It Decides Your (Un)Happiness!
Emotional energy decides if you feel happy or depressed.
The feelings of happiness or unhappiness are subjective feelings that you generate in your brain. They have nothing to do with the reality around you. They have nothing to do with the position you have at your job or the amount of money in your bank account.
It is conventional wisdom to say that very poor people may describe themselves as happy, whereas people who are very rich commit suicide because they are not able to control their emotions and emotional energy.
2. It Makes You More Productive and Successful
You can go an extra mile at work if your emotional energy level is high. This is not only the money or the company’s car which drives you.
Do you remember the last time when you were passionate about an important strategic project? You worked like a horse. You did not count the hours, and you delivered before the deadline.
On the other hand, on another day, the rage you felt towards your colleagues from other departments did not allow you to focus on the pending things. You were spending a lot of time complaining about the situation to anybody who came across. It was so unproductive….
3. Emotional Energy Is Free!
It does not require any special diet nor a strenuous physical exercise. All you have to do is to connect to the right emotions.
Many people live miserable lives and feel tired all the time. Obviously, feeling tired has very specific medical reasons; and if you feel tired all the time, you should visit your physician.
But maybe a physical cause of your tiredness does not exist, and it is your subjective emotions that are driving you down. There may be no need to take any medication nor pay the doctor. All you have to do is to tap into the right part of your brain.
Having said that, it is easier said than done. Later on, I will explain why.
Is it Easy to Control Your Emotional Energy?
It is everything, but still easy.
On the one hand, we often overestimate the importance of some events (both positive and negative) which happen around us. Why aren’t you able to see things in a cold, objective way?
Because the main factor that influences your world’s perception is YOURSELF and YOUR EMOTIONS.
On the other hand, we are not able to be in high spirits for a long time. This is a physiological defect linked to the flight or fight reaction. Our brain scans the world continuously for threats. This is why we feel negative emotions several times a day and find it very difficult to manage them.
This creates conflicts at home and work.
How to Boost our Emotional Energy?
The fundamental thing is to identify the triggers of negative emotions. When you have a full understanding of the behaviors or specific events that cause your emotional motor to “stutter”, then you can undertake corrective actions when they occur.
In other words, as the reality around us has no energetic effect, you decide what you feel. In short, you draw your own emotional conclusion. And your emotional conclusion will determine if your emotional energy will soar or plunge.
Let’s have a look at some examples of the drainers of emotional energy and the ways you can boost them.
1. Solve Any Unresolved Issue!
Is there anything in your life that has been hanging over your head like a Damocles sword for a long time?
Maybe there are some important financial issues you need to solve. Maybe there is something at work you need to confront? Or maybe there is a hidden emotional issue in your current relationship? Is there an important medical examination you are afraid of?
The list of potential unsolved issues is very long. If you procrastinate, it will eat you up emotionally. Every time you think about these issues, your mood will go down.
Solution: Take action and boost your emotional energy to be happier right now!
2. Don’t Dwell About the Past
Do you still think about some events from the past over and over again?
How do you feel when you start again ruminating on events long gone?
Angry? Frustrated? Unhappy?
Can’t you see that you are committing emotional suicide by chewing on this old pain repeatedly?
It also does not make sense to dwell too much on an unpleasant conversation you had yesterday at work.
How to recover from past traumas? In some cases, it is enough to say, “Yesterday was yesterday and today is today!”
But in other cases, you may need help from a friend, a family member, or even a psychologist.
3. Mind the Way You Interreact With Others
Do you think it is easier to catch someone else’s emotion or his/her cold?
Well, there is probably no official study on that, but my bet would be the former!
It is very easy to transfer our emotional energy to others, and others can easily transfer their emotional level to us.
Do you remember the best motivational speech you have ever heard? Or maybe someone communicated to you something extremely sad and the person had a broken voice or was crying?
Do you remember how you felt in both cases? You certainly were strongly influenced by the emotions of the person. Emotional energy is contagious, and it works both ways. You are influenced by another person and another person is “influenced” by you.
A breakfast argument with a family member can make your day unproductive. At the same time, a positive and happy conversation can do wonders for productivity.
Do you know which colleagues or family members can soar your energy? Spend more time with them and boost your emotional energy!
Does someone always take advantage of you? Maybe you are unable to set healthy personal boundaries at work and in family relationships.
The bad thing is that if you do not manage your boundaries at home, most likely you have the same problem in your job.
4. No More Worries About the Future and No More Anxiety
Unfortunately, worrying is a part of human nature. It is most likely related to the survival instinct.
But did you know that ALMOST ALL worries never happen?
Please read again: ALMOST ALL the things you worry about will never materialize.
You do not believe in it, do you?
Science has confirmed that more than 85% of the things we worry about will never happen.
5. Do Not Feel Guilty About Anything
Do you work long hours and sacrifice your family life? When you come home, you feel guilty.
As you saw in our emotional energy framework, the feeling of guilt can lead to energy drain or procrastination.
The solution is to establish some rituals at work and home. Let me give you an example.
Find time to have breakfast with your family to connect with them and discuss their plans for the day. It will make you feel good about being a good father or mother and closer to your family members.
If a joint breakfast is impossible due to different schedules, make sure that you have dinner with them during 2-3 workdays.
If someone feels exhausted, I always recommend checking their emotional state first before starting any diet or exercise program.
Of course, both diet and exercise can do wonders for your health and energy, but without solving your undermining energy issues, you will never be able to reach your maximum energy potential.
Monitor your emotions daily. Be aware how they influence your energy level. We encourage you to use the Manager Up’s Emotional Energy framework to get a better understanding of the correlation between your emotions and your productivity and success.