The art of managing emotions. Bonus: Two Emotional Maturity Exercises

Emotional competence is related to a person’s ability to process their experiences, emotions and knowledge. If we have emotional maturity, we can recognize our emotions and express them appropriately. Dealing with our emotions with the book “Integral Coaching”.

emotional maturity

We humans have both feelings and logic. Logic is an amazing thing, and thanks to it (though not to it alone), we have survived and thrived. Without feelings, however, our experience remains dry. It is emotions that enrich him. By denying this part of ourselves, we not only impoverish, but sometimes worsen our experience.

It is impossible to go through life without emotions.

At best, repressed emotions will “spread” to another object. For example, you keep calm during the working day, and at home you break down on your parents, children or a dog. Probably, this is still a healthier way than driven deep into irritation. “Healthy” means “healthy”. It is known that our emotional state is closely interconnected with physical health. Over time, accumulated negative emotions undermine it. Conditions such as acute stress, depression, chronic fatigue, and the like do not appear overnight. They gradually lead to denial or suppression of emotions.

Emotional maturity comes as the four core competencies develop:

  1. Knowing yourself.
  2. Manage yourself.
  3. Knowledge of others.
  4. Relationship management.

Knowing yourself and knowing others

Perhaps we are better at some competencies than others. For example, we notice a habit of falling into a bad mood, pouting after an argument with someone. This demonstrates our knowledge of ourselves. But if we are not able to cope with a bad mood, this is already connected with self-management.

In addition, in some situations we show more emotional maturity than in others. For example, at work, we may be more patient and calm, but immediately explode when we see someone occupy our parking space.

We can say that we are all capable of showing both maturity and immaturity.

Knowing others determines our ability to observe others and evaluate what is happening to them. To do this, you need to be able to understand your own emotional state and the emotional state of others and correctly interpret this information. And sometimes it’s not easy at all. For example, when someone yells, it is easy to understand that he is angry. It is more difficult to notice that a person is angry if he does not show it outwardly, but calmly nods, even smiles.

This competence is associated with empathy, the ability to feel the feelings of another person (empathy and sympathy are different things). In order to empathize with someone and acknowledge their feelings, those feelings must first be noticed. For some of us, this skill comes easily because we often focus on other people, their reactions, attitudes and opinions. For others, this presents some difficulty.

Sometimes, preoccupied with our thoughts and feelings, we may not notice some faint signals coming from the other. At its extreme, we might call it self-absorption or insensitivity. Some of us are completely blind to the emotional state of others, so we can easily offend without even noticing it.

Exercise “Crazy Argument”

This exercise aims to explore the level of development of one’s emotional competence, to become aware of one’s own behavior in emotionally charged situations, and to explore one’s attachment to an idea.

Divide into pairs and decide who will be partners A and B.

Stage 1. The task of each couple is to jointly come up with one crazy idea for two – for example, “you need to sleep on the ceiling, because in a dream the body must relax, and this is impossible on a bed. It is necessary to attach straps to the ceiling, hang and relax.

Stage 2. Partner A reasonably proves the viability and usefulness of the idea, and partner B argues against him with arguments. You can not stop and agree on something.

Stage 3. Switch roles. Partner B expresses an idea, and partner A argues with reason. Do not repeat!

How do you feel and what do you notice? This exercise shows us that there are no crazy ideas. Behind every idea is a thought and arguments. In addition, you have seen how quickly passions flare up. Here you just came up with this idea together, and you already have to defend it. This is where the attachment to her comes in.

Now imagine that a person lives with some idea all his life. It is very important to be able to see and try to find a reasonable grain in any nonsense and not be attached to your own idea.

Exercise “Reducing emotional stress”

The exercise allows participants to practice stress relief techniques and explore their conflict strategies by tracing their origins. The facilitator divides the group in half. One half stays in the room, the other goes out.

Instructions for those who are indoors. You are the director of an elite school that you can only get into by turns. Upon admission, candidates take exams. Everyone wants to study with you and pay money for it.

Instructions for those behind the door. Your child is in an elite primary school. School is expensive. Education is expensive, and getting into it was not easy. You worry about your child, for his adaptation. One day you come for him and find him with a broken nose. You send him to the medical office, and you yourself go to the director of the school. You realize that it’s the middle of the year and you can’t just transfer him to another school. You need to resolve the issue so that nothing like this ever happens again.

At the end of the exercise, after a conversation with the school principal, participants are asked to rate their condition on a 10-point scale. Suppose, when you entered the office, your condition was estimated at 5 points. Based on their scores, participants are asked to provide feedback on what the principal did that made them feel better (0–4 points) or worse (6–10 points).

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