Emotions are Catching

Ever turned up at work to find the boss in a bad mood, then discover that you too are having a bad day? Not only that, but everyone around you is feeling down?

It may not be news to you that emotions are contagious, that people can be infected by our mood. However, what may be new to you is that you choose your mood. You have to give permission to yourself, or allow yourself, to be in this particular mood.

Psychologists call a mood “State”.


All behaviour is a result of State.

There are some States that are helpful to us:

Energised (to motivate us)

Curiosity (to help us understand)

Determined (to help us to endure)

There are some others that are unhelpful to us in modern organisation life:




The good news is that you can change your State!

There are exercises that you can do that will change your State from an unhelpful State to one that will be more effective for you, however this is not the place for them here.

There are some easy steps you can take to change your State.



Pay close attention to how you are feeling when in a stressful situation.


Ask yourself if these feelings are helpful to you right now.


Ask yourself what feelings would be more helpful to you right now


Access those more helpful feelings by acting as though you are already feeling those more helpful feelings

An example:

You are going to give an important presentation or speech to the Board.

You feel nervous and your hands are shaking.

Nervousness is an emotion that is not required in this situation and will affect your performance. Therefore this emotion is unhelpful.

What emotion would be helpful?

Confidence and calmness

Who do you know that personifies confidence for you?

What would that confident person be doing right now?

How would they be talking?

How would they be feeling?

Keep going through the details above, going in deeper each time to get more details about the behaviours you need right now.

As the saying goes:

“Fake it, until you make it”

Have your best week ever

Email : mervyn@masteri.co.uk

If you want to discuss your personal development aspirations

About Mervyn Murray

International Leadership and Organisation Development Professional. Using a coaching style to support you every step of the way. Inspirational event speaker and father of 2.
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