Emotional buy-in


I’d like to overstate the obvious. Emotions appear at the core of many activities.

Decisions, choices, purchases, acquisitions, perceptions, motivation, security, and doubts. I don’t think any of us could deny that an emotional response forms part of anything we consider important.

As humans, we also consider it important to have control of our emotions, because we’re aware of what might happen should we let them off their leash. Conversely, we’re also aware of what can happen should we bottle up our emotions, fail to express ourselves, or try to hide how we truly feel.

Recently I’ve been pondering if there’s such a thing as an emotional balance point, but I don’t believe so. Why? Because the influence of our emotions weighs more than our abilities to control them. Unless of course we know and understand that about ourselves, which is the true sign of our own emotional buy-in

Emotional What?

So, what the hell do I mean by our own emotional buy in? Simply put, it’s about encouraging ourselves to know, that at the point of a crucial decision, or choice, or core activity, we’re going to get emotional about it. And whilst that might sound a little “well DUH!” it’s the next part I want to highlight.

Through learning and understanding how our emotions encourage us to act, we can respond accordingly. That’s our own emotional buy-in working in favour of us. And it opens up alternatives.

Here’s a personal example. One of my stronger emotional traits is, I don’t suffer fools. I know this piece of myself intimately, and it has helped me better learn the art of patience. Ergo I respond accordingly to this emotion, saving me from turning into a vein-popping red-faced flushed up aggro person in front of someone who doesn’t deserve it. Patience has saved me from the effects of burying my emotions. Through understanding my reactions I encourage myself to tailor my response. Win win.

My own emotional buy-in works equally well in other core activities. Another personal example. When it comes to larger purchases I lose myself in beauty, grandeur, and style. Not the function or the form. I am a sales person’s dream, emotionally attached to a prospective purchase hook line and sinker. but again, I know this part of myself intimately, and temper this by understanding I’m clearly in for the bling before I’ve considered practicality or value. Suffice to say common sense prevails, and rarely do I come home with boxes of expensive useless crap!

Emotional How?

Now I know that those two examples might sound all fine and dandy, but recognising our own emotional buy-in is something I heartily encourage clients of mine to take on. Practise as often as possible, not just when they’re buying bling, or interacting with fools. and I’ll also suggest they look deeper. For instance, how’s your own emotional buy-in when having a crack at personal challenges?

How well do you know your emotional reactions during core activities? Are you a person who cracks too soon when a challenge becomes difficult? Is it nerve wracking when speaking to someone about a subject they’re not reacting well to? Do you hide what you truly feel, through fear or intimidation? If you answered yes to any of those, do you have a method for helping yourself through? Do you understand your emotions, and what they encourage you to do? What’s your way of turning negative emotional responses into positive ones?

If you don’t have a way, I want to suggest it’s because you’ve not accepted your own emotional buy-in moment. It doesn’t matter what the core activity is if we recognise in ourselves that our emotions are dictating our reactions. And if we’re not happy with the results, isn’t it logical we focus on changing how we react?

Emotional Why?

Consider this. If you know you’re likely to give up on the third attempt, and you never challenged that, for whatever reason, you couldn’t possibly be happy with the resulting action. So why accept that? Acknowledge your emotional buy-in, commit to changing that reaction, and this time tell yourself you’re going in for a fourth. What happens then hmm?

Truth is, we don’t know. But what if it was the point at which you busted through and cool stuff rained down from above?

Emotional buy-in is the courage we need to challenge what our emotions try to convince us to believe. We’ll better understand what we do, when we do it, and how we can turn that around. Like I said there is no balance point, but there is always something to be gained.

Lastly I want to share a personal truth. Often, I remind myself that deep down if I know what I do, and don’t like it, but don’t do anything about it, the resulting emotions and reactions will never change. Not unless I accept and understand that, and create emotional buy-in. So, what can emotional buy-in change for you?