Wie viel wissen wir über unsere Emotionen?

Emotionen sind unsere ständigen Begleiter. Sie beeinflussen unsere Entscheidungen und unser Verhalten; ob wir es wollen oder nicht. Die Fähigkeit, unsere Emotionen wahrzunehmen und zu verstehen sowie zu erkennen, wie unsere Emotionen uns und andere beeinflussen, heisst Emotionales Selbstbewusstsein. Das Emotionale Selbstbewusstsein gehört zu den fundamentalen Kompetenzen der Emotionalen Intelligenz.

 Das Radar, die Zwiebel, der Spiegel und der „ripple“ Effekt“

Emotionales Selbstbewusstsein steht in Zusammenhang mit folgenden Begriffen: Radar, Zwiebel, Spiegel und „ripple Effekt“. Überlegen Sie einmal, welchen Zusammenhang es zwischen diesen Begriffen und dem Emotionalem Selbstbewusstsein geben könnte. Die Antwort auf diese Frage finden Sie gleich in diesem Video.


Was ist der Mehrwert, über unsere Emotionen Bescheid zu wissen?

Durch die (Er-)Kenntnisse unserer Emotionen erhalten wir den Zugang zu unseren Bedürfnissen und Informationen über unsere Reaktionen in konkreten Situationen. Dies können wir dafür nutzen, bessere Entscheidungen zu treffen oder unser Verhalten bei Bedarf anzupassen. Wenn wir unsere Emotionen nicht beachten, kumuliert sich in unserem Inneren Energie, deren Macht wir uns kaum bewusst sind.

Pit Stopp für Emotionen

Wir können unser Emotionales Selbstbewusstsein trainieren. Dazu schlage ich Ihnen vor, mehrere Male pro Tag einen Pit-Stopp für Ihre Emotionen einzulegen. Nehmen Sie sich Zeit um folgende Fragen zu beantworten:

 1). Was fühle ich im Moment?

2). Warum fühle ich was ich fühle?

3). Was macht das mit mir?

4). Wie beeinflussen meine Emotionen andere?

 5). Möchte ich im aktuellen Emotionalen Zustand bleiben oder nicht?

Die Gewohnheit, den Blick nach innen zu kehren, ist sehr wertvoll. Sie ermöglicht Ihnen eine spanende Reise in Ihrer eigenen Welt. Diese Reise ist entdeckungsreich und unendlich. Machen Sie sich auf den Weg!

Impulse control: Are you an “act now, think later” person?

Impulse control involves understanding the appropriate times and ways to act on emotions and impulses, and the importance of thinking before you act. Impulse Control is the ability to resist or delay an impulse, drive or temptation to act and includes avoiding rash behaviors and decisions.

People with high Impulse Control: 

    – are patient and calm even when provoked;

    – deliberately survey a situation before making a decision;

    – rarely regret what they have said or done.

People with low Impulse Control can be:

    – very involved and talkative during meetings or conversations;

    – impatient for action, antsy to move into the execution stages of projects;

    – inclined to take an “act now, think later” approach to solving problems and making decisions.

Man eating paper

People with low impulse control usually have one internal voice and it says “Go for it!”. If you are this type of a person, you (and your colleagues) may benefit from “pausing” that voice and taking time to think before you jump into action. When you feel your impulses coming, try one of the following to adjust the emotional expression of your impulses:

a). visualize the intensity of your impulses using an image that resonates well with you, for example, an ocean wave, and estimate the impact that your impulses might have on the people around you in the current situation;

b). if the situation allows, literally put your palm over your mouth for a moment to prevent yourself from fully expressing your emotions; or

c). take the classic 10 deep breaths when feeling overwhelmed by your emotional impulses.

It’s very important to be aware of your own reasons for getting your impulses under control in every specific situation. These reasons will motivate you to continuously train your impulse control.

The sign of an intelligent people is their ability to control their emotions by the application of reason.Marya Mannes 

Reality Testing – are you sugarcoating reality or fearing the worst?

Reality Testing is the capacity to remain objective by seeing things as they really are, rather than as we wish or fear them to be. It involves noticing when our perception of a situation is overly negative or overly positive.

Rosa glasses_07012015

Some people tend to wear rose-colored glasses.  The glasses may make the world look nice, but there is a flip-side: the     person might misinterpret critical information, underestimate risks or overlook a danger. For example, if a person can’t accurately assess the amount of effort needed for the task at hand, he or she might end up stressed.


Woman scared_07012015The opposite of seeing the world through rose-colored glasses is coloring reality with own fears. For example, if such a person isn’t greeted warmly by a manager in the hallway, this person might think: “Oh, my manager doesn’t like me anymore. I did something wrong.” His thoughts colored by insecurity might prompt wrong assumptions, which prevent him from seeing the situation objectively.


Good Reality Testing means verifying how well our perceptions match reality. Is there an absolute reality out there? Yes, no, and maybe. We probably wouldn’t be able to answer this question. However, people with a good sense of reality are able to tune into a situation and assess the correlation between what’s experienced and what objectively exists. They remain on the same page as everyone who is involved in this situation. Reality Testing enables us to focus on ways to cope with what we discover and keep our emotions in check, untainted by illusions.

One strategy to improve Reality Testing is by gathering an “opinion pool”. This strategy can be very helpful when taking decisions:

Step 1: Gather a pool of different opinions to make your own:

•    Ask different people who have proved to have a good Reality Testing skills

•    Ask experts in the field in which you are taking a decision

•    Ask your “Gut Feeling”

Step 2: Assess your Reality Testing skills by comparing your opinion against the opinion of others you have in the “opinion pool”:

•    Do you tend to sugarcoat reality?

•    Do you fear the worst?

•    Which emotions influence your sense of reality?

Be Emotionally Smart by “Being Realistic”!

Social Responsibility – Being a Social Samaritan

People around globe

To be a Social Samaritan means to demonstrate your social conscience and be compelled to help society and social groups. This competency is called “Social Responsibility”. Social Responsibility is that moral compass directing your behavior toward promoting the greater good of others.

A good example of Social Responsibility is to do fund raising projects for charities or to help out at social events as a volunteer. To me, being on the organizing committee of an annual neighborhood get-together is also a sign of Social Responsibility, though on the local level.

Whether for one person or for all of mankind, your contribution matters! Not only for others but also for yourself. If you are one of those who thrive while contributing, your social activity will bring you a deep sense of fulfillment and inner worth. I have had this experience helping out my son with his projects for WWF. Being engaged in social activities allows you to train different skills. For example, being the president of a tennis club will give you a chance to practice your leadership skills. Another advantage is to build relationships with people who are involved in the same social activity. Maybe these relationships will help you in the future.

As with all competencies of Emotional Intelligence, finding the golden mean is the key!


Overloaded hand white flagBeing too high on Social Responsibility

If you are involved in too many social projects, you may be overloaded with too many responsibilities, which can take a toll on the quality of your work or personal well-being. Be mindful that you don’t engage in helping others as an escape from things that need to be fixed in your own life. The “Best Intentions” strategy will help you there:

– Check in with yourself to ensure that you are not avoiding your current emotional state by focusing solely on helping others.

– Ask someone close to you (e.g., family or close friends) to describe what your intentions to help look like from their perspective. Others may be able to see the real motives behind even the best intentions.

– If you are overly involved to the point that your personal well-being is neglected or you are placing unrealistic expectations on your friends, family, or colleagues for their social or corporate involvement, it may be time to reflect on the motives behind your desire to help others.

Presents flyingWhen you are too low on Social Responsibility

By avoiding any social work you might miss an opportunity to discover and unleash your potential as well as enrich yourself by contributing to others. Compare your social engagement with the ceremony that goes with giving a present. Do you agree that we experience joy while choosing, wrapping and presenting a gift? Social work is making a gift to more than one person. The strategy of “Taking the Initiative” can help you there:

– Identify two or three charities, nonprofit organizations, or causes to which you feel a connection.

– While brainstorming, record several activities that you can engage in to help at least one of these organizations. Write down what outcomes you expect to see from engaging in each activity. Ensure that these outcomes benefit the organizations or people and aren’t just about making yourself feel good.

– Create a plan and a time frame and if possible, share these details with someone who can hold you accountable to follow through on them.

Be Emotionally Smart by Being a Social Samaritan!

Empathy – are you able to step into another person’s shoes?



Selection of male shoes isolated on white - more footware in my portfolio

Empathy is best described as the ability to step into another person’s shoes and to recognize, understand, and appreciate how other people feel. It involves being able to articulate your understanding of another’s perspective and behaving in a way that respects others’ feelings.

The most important demonstration of empathy comes when the consideration of the other person’s position is followed by an action. The action may vary from just actively listening to helping a person on the task at hand. The support should be genuine and not of a “transactional” nature, in other words, not intended as a way to get something in return.

The empathic nature makes a person approachable, someone with whom people feel safe sharing thoughts and ideas. It provides a foundation for all other interpersonal skills.

Being too low on Empathy

People who have difficulty empathizing can’t articulate another’s perspective and are more focused on facts than on others’ feelings and reactions. For instance, if a person fails to take into account colleagues’ feelings when resolving conflict, managing change, or making tough decisions, he or she leaves them feeling alienated and undervalued. Additionally, you cannot predict how others will accept change if you cannot address the emotions they are experiencing (e.g., fear or excitement).

Two mature woman in business

Strategy to improve low empathy

Active listening can improve the level of understanding of the other person’s experience. Active listening entails repeating back, in your own words, what the speaker has said. Those with high empathy can do this even if they do not agree with what the speaker is saying. To practice active listening:

– In general, listen more than you speak. Try it in your next interaction and note the approximate amount of time you spend listening versus speaking.

– When you find yourself jumping in to speak, stop, listen, and reflect back what you have heard before offering your own opinions.

When you are too high on empathy

Being too empathic has a negative side. When colleagues trust you with their issues and feel comfortable coming to you for advice, you, being very concerned with their feelings, run the risk of taking on their problems, becoming the victim of your empathy. Being over-empathic can lead you to avoid making tough decisions or to act in some way at the expense of your own interest or needs.

Strategy to develop if you are too empathic

Mixing Sugar with Spice. It is important to ensure that your empathy doesn’t get in the way of handling tough conversations or decisions. Being empathic does not mean being extra nice all the time; you still have to do what you have to do! When a tough conversation or decision is needed, acknowledge that you may:

– Need more preparation time in order to express the right amount of empathy. Write down what you want to say and rehearse it.

– Be respectful of people’s reactions, but don’t let them derail you.

– Keep in mind that if you mirror someone’s emotion, you will likely intensify that person’s reaction. For example, if the news you are bringing someone makes them angry, by becoming angry yourself you are likely to make the situation more heated.

Be able to step into the other person’s shoes but don’t lose your own.