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How emotions can influence your behaviour

What’s it about?:How emotions can influence your behaviour


So somebody drives into the back of your car…


There you were, quietly waiting at the traffic lights when “whack” – a direct hit by the driver behind you who was not paying attention.


So what happens next?


Well, that’s largely down to the emotional state you choose to act from.


You see…


You could act from a state of fear.
In which case you might get out of the car, apologise and accept responsibility for not moving forwards!


Or perhaps anger is your dominant emotion.
You jump out of your car shouting all sorts of obscenities at the driver behind you, march aggressively over to his car and threaten to punch his lights out for being such a ****ing idiot!


Or perhaps…


A state of calm is your dominant emotion.
After making sure you are fine, you slowly walk back to the driver behind you and explain that no harm was done and that’s just another job for the insurance companies. You take down the relevant details and then calmly drive away.


Or how about kindness?


So once you have made sure you are ok, your primary concern is the driver behind you. You go and ask him how he is, remind him that it could happen to anyone, reassure him that you are fine and, after taking the insurance details, wish him a great day and reassure him once again that there’s nothing to worry about.


You see…


We always have a choice of behaviour. In all situations.


And your underlying emotional state, if you allow it to, will make that behavioural choice for you.


Fear typically leads to avoidance and submissive behaviour.
Anger often leads to aggression.
Calmness often leads to thoughtful and rational steps.
And kindness leads to concern for the welfare of others.


And what’s more…


You can learn to manage your emotions and therefore change your behaviours.


Even if your initial response was anger, you can choose to change that anger to a state of calm or even kindness.


And the win/win?


Acting from a place of fear or anger will drain your energy and you never feel better afterwards.




Acting from emotions of calm and kindness will leave you feeling energised and fulfilled.


So the key question to ask yourself is, which dominant emotion am I allowing to influence and drive my behaviour?


I’m off to pay careful attention to my emotional states so I act from a place of kindness more often.


How about you?


To your fulfilment.





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Steve Neale
“Creator of the Limbic Performance System for Outstanding Leadership”


Psychologist, Executive Coach, EI Practitioner, Award Winning Trainer, International Author, Psychodynamic Therapist, Hypnotherapist, Mindfulness Instructor, International Speaker, Creator of the LPS, Creator of the Accredited Masters in High Performance Leadership.

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