The Strategist

Five steps to restrain emotions when making difficult decisions

05/28/2018 - 14:03

The skill of managing emotions allows a person, team or organization to make decisions using their intellect, and direct emotions to support and stimulate the mental work. In a book Key Coaching Models, Stephen Gribben tells how to properly manage emotions in order to get the best results. Let's start!

The five steps to managing emotions described below have been adapted on the basis of the numerous psychological approaches to managing emotions and stress. The practical process was developed as a reaction to the most common coaching scenarios, when the client is not able to think clearly and logically, but is guided by emotions instead.

Having planned this fast five-step program, people, teams and organizations get an opportunity to recognize their feelings, perceive them as part of a process that needs to be understood on a logical rather than an emotional level. And this allows them to make reasonable, measured and objective decisions.


The first step in managing emotions is to realize their presence. It is this level of self-awareness that allows us to effectively manage our emotions. Anxiety, nerves or lack of concentration, and, on the other hand, patience or concentration - all these are the right symptoms of excessive emotions.


Further, an emotion needs to be given a name in order to be successfully managed, because then it can be thought over and objectively analyzed, and not just tested. This separation of thoughts and feelings is a very effective technique.


The third step in this process is sometimes quite difficult, but it is simply necessary for success. Whatever emotion you experience, you need to learn how to accept it; that is, to understand that any emotion is normal; that what you are experiencing can be understood and explained. Be it an emotion that is quite appropriate in this situation, or, on the contrary, one that should be avoided, it is very important to know that it takes place and accept that, given the circumstances, this is quite normal at the moment.


At first sight, the fourth step may seem quite strange and unnatural: do nothing. This is an extremely important component of effective management of emotions, since such a "pause" allows the intellect to come to the fore, pushing emotions backwards. Such a "pause" can be instantaneous, but this is also enough for the intellect to take the initiative.


And finally, after the completion of the first four, the fifth stage comes. Now you have to decide what is now needed to achieve the desired result. When the intellect plays the leading role in this process, all emotions go to the background, stimulating and supporting the intellectual, strategic and thoughtful choice of further actions.

Based on “Key Coaching Models: The 70+ Models Every Manager and Coach Needs to Know” by Stephen Gribben

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