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University of Minnesota Extension

Emotional agility

Two for You — take two minutes to live and lead with intention

Episode 1.7

How can you prevent your emotions and negative thoughts from undermining your leadership efforts and goals? By improving your emotional agility. Follow these four steps from the research of Susan David.



Note: Two for You written transcripts are generated using a combination of speech recognition software and human transcribers, and may contain errors. Please check the corresponding audio before referencing content in print.

[Lori] Hello and welcome to Two for You. So, how do you handle change - are you easily able to adapt and move on or do you find yourself stuck in your emotions.

[Denise] If you find facing change difficult, you may want to work on your Emotional Agility. Emotional Agility is the ability to be flexible when you face everyday situations so that you can respond in an optimal way

[Lori] So, Susan David, who is someone whose research we like to look at, has written the book, "Emotional Agility," and she has found that people who are emotionally agile are more flexible, they're more dynamic in this fast changing world that we have that's quite complex, they're more open, they're receptive, they're more engaged and they're also able to tolerate high levels of stress.

[Denise] So she offers four steps in becoming more emotionally agile. First, she says, "Show up." Accept the fact that you have these emotions, recognize them and look at them with curiosity and without judgment. Then the second step is to "Step Out" - to detach yourself from those emotions and realize, you know, they're fleeting. They come and they go. The third is to "Walk your why" and this is where she says, you know, get in touch with your core values, the values that drive you, motivate you, and help you attain those long-term goals. And then, "Move On." Basically, make those little tweaks and adjustments that you need to so you can keep moving forward and stay on the path that you're on.

[Lori] So, I like those: Show up, Step out, Walk your why, and Move on. I also like some of the words that she has when we're around change - she says, just to loosen up, calm down and live with more intention. [Denise] Which is great for us and you, this month, as you live and lead with intention.

Authors: Lori Rothstein and Denise Stromme, former Extension educators

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