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Home » Blog » Role of Emotional Agility in Leadership Development

Sixteen thousand is the average number of words we say each day. Interesting?

But imagine the number of unspoken ones that run through our heads! The majority of which are evaluations and judgments interwoven with emotions, some of which are pleasant and useful others that are negative. Ahhhh….!

Humans were born in this cosmic world with impeccable superpowers, that separated us from other beings, that made us the highest being on the ladder of cosmic miracles. We developed a variety of behavioral traits that set us apart from the rest of the animal kingdom. But what enabled us was our unique gift to connect emotionally. 

It’s true. According to research, people reported having experienced one emotion 90% of the time in their daily lives. So imagine the number of times we feel different emotions in a day. But standard opinion has claimed that unpleasant thoughts and sentiments have no place at work. Executives, especially leaders, should be either stoic or happy, projecting confidence and dampening any negativity boiling up within them. 

However, this contradicts basic biology. Judgment, doubt, and fear are all part of a healthy person’s inner stream of ideas and feelings. That’s just our brains doing what they’re supposed to do: anticipating and solving difficulties while avoiding potential dangers.

This is where the role of emotional agility has taken a great stand in leadership development. Leaders today should adapt to change not just through quick thinking but emotional agility, as well. Understanding how changes are impacting them and their teams paired with techniques for resetting or realigning emotions is essential for effective leadership. But before we step into this, we need to understand what is emotional agility.

Understanding Emotional Agility

We may have evolved to live in big houses and no longer need to hunt for a living, but emotions remain essential. They not only assist us in better understanding ourselves and others, but it also assists others in better understanding you. The goal is to help you become more aware of your emotions, learn to accept them, and then flourish by increasing your emotional agility. This will allow you to make peace with even the most difficult emotions, improve your ability to enjoy your relationships, achieve your goals, and live a life of purpose

That, however, is only the ’emotional’ aspect of emotional agility. The ‘agility’ section focuses on your thought and behaviour processes – those mental and physical habits that can prevent you from prospering, particularly when, like the captain of the battleship, you react in the same obstinate way to new or different situations.

So, what exactly is emotional agility? Emotional Agility is a process that helps us to be present in the moment, modifying or maintaining our actions in order to live in ways that are consistent with our goals and values. Emotional agility involves loosening up, calming down, and living more purposefully. It’s all about deciding how you’ll handle your emotional alarm system. 

Emotional agility has been found to help people with a variety of issues, including negative self-image, heartbreak, physical pain, anxiety, depression, procrastination, difficult transitions, and more, by bridging the gap between how they feel and what they do about those feelings. However, emotional agility isn’t just useful for persons dealing with personal problems. It also draws on a variety of psychological disciplines to investigate the qualities of successful, thriving people.

Emotional Agility in Leadership Development 

Isn’t it true that today there is a fixed standard for everything? Be it a car, a spa, or even a leader for instance. As leaders, we are always expected to maintain a stand but we must learn to connect with our true selves, accepting the messiness of our life experiences, both good and terrible. We can’t deny what we’re experiencing or how emotions affect us, and we can’t suppress those feelings. 

This will allow us to connect with our authentic leadership and communication styles, allowing us to escape the trap of pretending to be someone we aren’t, which is unsustainable and often leads to mistrust. But emotionally agile leaders recognise that they set the tone for what is acceptable in their businesses in terms of emotional expression. They are able to express a wide range of emotions in suitable ways, allowing their employees to do the same. They give proper channels for emotional expression for their employees.

In this ICW 2022, we connect you, with Dan Newby, who has acted as a catalyst, to bring emotional agility to your coaching game. Join us in this session to learn:

  • The power of pairing emotions with intellect as a leader
  • Practical techniques for identifying and shifting emotions
  • Ways to integrate emotions as a tool in your current way of coaching

This session will strengthen your coaching presence, help you evoke awareness in your clients, and facilitate their growth as leaders. Register now.

About The Speaker

Dan Newby is a champion for emotional literacy and works with leaders, educators, and coaches worldwide. His passion is helping emotional literacy become common sense and emotions a tool for daily use. He has authored four books on emotional literacy and its application to coaching. He regularly leads his course Emotions-Centered Coaching for coaches and “people who support people” including leaders, therapists, educators, faith leaders, and parents.

Dan holds a bachelor’s degree in education from Drury University in the U.S. His coach training was with Newfield Network where he also studied Integral and Somatic Coaching. He is trained as a Clifton Strengths Finder Coach through the Gallup Organization, London, and holds a PCC Certification from ICF backed by more than 7000 hours of coaching.

Before his work as a coach and trainer he worked 25 years in private business in roles ranging from production to CEO. From 2006 to 2012 he served as COO, CEO, and Senior Course Leader for Newfield Network Coach Training School in Boulder, Colorado. He led training for Newfield in the U.S., Europe, and Canada. He has been independent since 2012 working with individual and organizational clients in the area of emotional literacy and Emotions-Centered Coaching, a methodology he developed.

Born in the U.S. Dan spent his elementary years in Congo, Northern Rhodesia, and Switzerland and, at 19, one year in Israel. His young and middle adult years he lived in the Midwestern U.S., his father’s ancestral home. In 2006 he relocated to Colorado and since 2012 has lived in Spain. He is married to Lucy Núñez who is his partner in School of Emotions and co-author of two of his books. Register now.