How Leaders Can Regulate Their Negative Emotions

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It is not uncommon for HR leaders to go through some negative emotions: frustration, anger, irritation, fear, demotivation, etc. It is normal.

But, when these feelings continue to survive for a long time, it ends up discouraging your employees and demotivating them instead.

When leaders suffer negative emotions, they end up creating an aura of negativity, which is bound to reach employees at some point or the other.

Consider this example:

One of your A-performers is leaving the organization after five years of collaboration. This person had several dependent roles, responsibilities, and a whole team to manage.

When this person leaves, a lot of business processes will suffer from low performance. Hence, the team is unable to handle the pressure.

Every candidate that you have called in for the interview doesn’t match the requirements of the job role. The whole HR team is demotivated, and the organization of that employee is also demotivated. Further, your employees must work extra because of the increased workload and pressure.

What would you do in such a situation?

It is simple to give in to this anger, fear, or demotivation. All the other team members are doing it, then why not the HR manager?

Because of the HR manager gives in to pressure, who will handle the other members?

It is not possible to reduce work inconsistencies or create a smooth workforce without the HR manager stepping up.

Here’s how you can do it.

Regulate Your Emotions

Research says that leaders’ ability to regulate emotions define the determination and morale of their team. From all the emotions and factors of emotional intelligence, regulating emotions is one of the master skills. The manager’s ability to control emotions during critical times defines the success or failure of their team.

There are two ways in which HR managers or other leaders can regulate their emotions: suppression and reappraisal.


As the name suggests, suppression indicates suppressing your emotions or hiding it. This often means pretending to be okay when you are not okay.

While this may seem like a perfect strategy, this is harmful to the individual. It leads to a build-up of negative feelings, which eventually cause fewer close relations, negative thinking, less supportive nature, and reduced life satisfaction.

Research also suggests that if you suppress your emotions, it can increase your stress and anxiety levels.

This manager’s team would suffer more because the team would feel an unknown pressure. It would seem like the leader or manager is calm, but, in reality, the negativity in the functioning and strength of achieving would increase. This would ultimately demotivate the team.

It is often perceived that if suppression doesn’t work, the opposite of it should, right?

But that doesn’t work either.

Imagine if you go to your team and express your frustration of not being able to find a new person for the job role. Your failure will be immediately radiated by your employees. Many will start worrying about the future of their team and give in to stress.

You don’t want that, do you?


Reappraisal, on the other hand, seems to be the right strategy for the moment. It includes revisiting the incident and understanding that this is not the end. For instance, you may have interviewed ten candidates and didn’t find the perfect one, but you can talk more candidates, right?

You can always offer extra benefits to the old employee to help them stay. There are several solutions to this problem.

Reassessing the situation from a different perspective helps HR managers to address the issues efficiently.

A study even says that if leaders use reappraisal methods instead of suppression, their team members are more likely to manage their responses towards the situation.

So, by reassessing, you are not only helping yourself reevaluate the situation from a different perspective but also helping your team overcome negative emotions.

But, isn’t it hard to handle and reassess in hard situations?

Whenever you have trouble reassessing the situation, think of the issue as a challenge, not a problem. Think that you need to take up this challenge and bring a change.


Handling negative emotions is not only necessary for the HR manager but also critical for the team. The HR manager is supposed to manage and control the people of the company. If this manager gives in to pressure, the rest of the people will also give in to pressure.

Hence, stay motivated and use reassessing and reappraisal ways to uplift your morale and encourage yourself.

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HR Connect In house Author

HR Connect In house Author

Our inhouse authors have expertise in several areas of HR and Payroll. Their content contributions have been published in leading blogs, websites and print publications.
HR Connect In house Author

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