Are you using your feelings for insight and direction–or are your feelings using you?

Gas Pedal or GPS? Strategic Use of Feelings

Are you using your feelings for insight and direction–or are your feelings using you?

Feelings get a bad rap, especially at work. We want to be “professional” of course, rather than reactive. Yet feelings, when used skillfully, can help us self-connect and self-manage at work, helping us clarity and others’ attention and buy-in. It’s like using your feelings as a GPS system, rather than a lead foot on a gas pedal.

As human beings, we are naturally empathic. When we hear a feeling word, it has a magnetic, compelling quality—far more effective than giving an evaluation or generalization in getting others to listen and take action.

Here are some examples:

“This just isn’t working!” or “I’m really concerned about this…I’ve seen this happen twice before, and it impacts sales.”

“They always screw things up in billing!” or “I’m so frustrated! I really want accuracy in how these numbers are reported!

“Great job!” or “I’m really excited and grateful for the work you’ve done on this project—it’s made a difference for the whole team!”

How do the feeling words in each set get your attention and build connection differently than just hearing an evaluation? What feeling words can you imagine using in work?

If you learn to notice what you’re feeling, and the signs (sensations) in your body, you can be more skillful in responding—avoiding those blow ups that give feelings a bad rap in the first place. You can also express appreciation in a more compelling way. Download here a list of feeling words often used in a business setting.

Want to learn more? Request your free 30 minute consult to see how these and other skills in Collaborative Communication can make a difference for you and your team via coaching or training. 

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