I want to help you not just survive, but THRIVE in these crazy times. Yes, it is an uncertain time and there are things that we won’t be able to control – but it doesn’t have to be an obstacle, it can be an opportunity.
For 7 weeks I am going to send you a daily dose of inspiration, because if we set our compass right, we can sail through this!
“Calm is contagious – spread it!”
Tip # 5: Be the one to set the emotional tone
Emotions are as contagious as a virus. Right now, when we are perhaps spending more time in confined spaces with our loved ones than normal, it is very helpful to remember that you can be the one to set the mood of the house. You can boost your immunity to ‘catching’ negative moods from others AND deliberately spread a calm, enthusiastic, or playful mood around your household!
Research* has revealed that when someone expresses strong emotions we automatically mimic, at a micro level, the expressions and tensions in their face and body – this triggers us to recreate their emotional state in our own brain, a part of how we experience empathy. The more expressive someone is and the higher the intensity in their emotion, the more catching it is.
We talk about it as mirroring. Wonderfully emotions like calmness and enthusiasm are spread just as easily as anxiety and anger. So turn up the volume on how expressive you are! We can step out of the loop of reacting, by: deliberately slowing and deepening our breath; relaxing our muscles; changing our posture and facial expressions to reflect a brighter mood; being playful and expressing gratitude.
As you go in to this weekend, experiment with your power to take the wheel and deliberately brighten the emotional tone in your interactions – you can become a calming force for their anxiety or a ray of sunshine to lift a low mood.