Self-Regulation: A Skill That Must Be Implemented


( ENSPIRE Health & Wellness ) Why Self-Regulation Is Essential To Success In The Business World And Personal Life

ENSPIRE Contributor: Naomi Stamps

Self-regulation is a skill that many of us struggle with to ensure a smooth journey in our personal and professional life. I mean, let’s face it. We got bosses, teachers, and family members coming left and right with an ongoing mission. A mission to get on our ever-lasting nerve and drive us insane. I know we’ve all felt that burning desire to spew certain words their way when problems arise. And unfortunately, some of us have been unsuccessful at holding back. It’s important for us to practice self-regulation regularly to prevent ugly situations. 

 I know, I know. Easier said than done right? I get it. We’re humans and can’t turn off our emotions. But when we don’t implement self-regulation into our lives, it only leads to messy conclusions. Some scenarios include useless arguing, saying something hurtful, fighting, and even losing our jobs. Of course, this doesn’t mean to stay quiet if we’re being abused and disrespected. But there’s a proper way to handle situations without making matters worse. Self-regulation simply means that you control your emotions so you maintain respect for others. 

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One thing my father has always taught me is that it’s not always what you say but how you say it. I have carried this tip from childhood into adulthood in order to keep self-regulation at the front of my mind when upsetting scenarios arise. Let me give an example. I sent a polite and concise email to a person once to get clarity on a topic. To my surprise, I received a rude response. The person assumed I didn’t review the information provided carefully (which wasn’t true) and scolded me. 

I. Was. FUMING. My initial thoughts were, “I know this person isn’t giving me an attitude. All I did was ask a basic question, and this is the response I get? Seriously?!” I knew what I wanted to say back (and it would not be pretty). But I took a deep breath and implemented my self-regulation tactics. First, I considered why I got that response and remembered this person had a stressful week. Does this excuse the rudeness? Absolutely not. But it helped me to understand why it happened. Second, I reminded myself that my emotional response would lead me to being disrespectful and missing out on a valuable opportunity. 

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Once I cooled off, I politely thanked the person, reiterated my knowledge of the information,  and stated my desire to perform the task successfully. Self-regulation helped me to calmly deescalate things. There will always be people who get under our skin, but we cannot let them get the best of us. The energy wasted being angry can be used toward something more productive. It might feel good to get those feelings off your chest, but ask yourself this: what does it accomplish? Nothing good comes from stooping to someone else’s level. 

I know self-regulation is hard. Life’s hard. We face challenges; we confront them and smash them to bits with our drive and passion. Don’t allow others to steal your joy or break you. When we do that, we’re letting them win. Before you decide to have a face-to-face or send a nasty email, take a breath. Step away for a few minutes if necessary and carefully analyze the situation. You may have moments where you’re unsuccessful with your self-regulation. Use those experiences as a way of evaluating areas you need to improve on. Stay strong and don’t give up. 

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