Not part of it

There’s a myth in many places of work that emotions aren’t part of it.

“We’re professional,” you might say, “no place for feelings here”.

And in saying that, you’ve bought wholly into an enormously unhelpful misunderstanding: mood as an essentially corrupting, messy, distracting element of human life – better left alone than faced, better ignored than talked about, better suppressed than felt.

But moods didn’t go away just because you’re pretending they don’t have a place, and they didn’t stop shaping the world of possibility available to you just because you don’t want to look at them.

Somehow, we’re going to have to start talking to each other, in even the most ‘rational’ of organisations, about personal and organisational mood, and about the way gratitude, resentment, anxiety, resignation, love, shame and cynicism shape what’s possible for us and those around us.

And that’s going to entail widening our understanding of what human beings are, and what it is to engage in work together.

Photo Credit: Eric Bégin via Compfight cc

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