What to do when a mood overtakes you?

eagle gloomy skyWhile considering what to write today, I was feeling in a bit of a gloomy mood. Not that anything was particularly going wrong in my life. Quite the opposite, all aspects of my life are great. So where did this mood come from and what do I do about it?

What is a mood anyway? It is a feeling that pervades all other experiences I am having. It runs the gamut from the high of ecstasy to a low of despair and all the variations in between. Moods are always triggered by some response that I am having to the world. They seem to arise without warning and can stay until they leave without any apparent reason. The triggering mechanism could be the inside world of my thoughts. I know that my thoughts seem to originate from places I don’t know and come with randomness and apparent lack of control by me. Moods can be sparked by a physical sensation or an encounter with something or someone else.

In most business settings the moods of people with great influence in the organization can affect everyone around them. It is not uncommon for people to call the assistant of an executive and ask, “what kind of mood is she in today?” The response to this question will determine if and how the person will approach the executive.
annoyed guyHaving been an executive who was unaware of the impact of my moods on the organizations for which I was responsible, I can look back with amazement at the havoc I caused. If something was not going my way, I could become petulant. I can remember how people treated me during these times. It would either create a situation in which people did not tell me things (so they wouldn’t get a negative reaction because of the mood I was in), or they simply avoided me. In either case, I missed opportunities to connect with those I cared about and to whom I had responsibilities.

As I was sitting with my gloomy mood, I remembered that moods are something that I can keep for blossoming and change when I choose. I have a few “tricks” that help me now. The first is to realize that I am feeling a particular mood, like my gloomy mood this morning. I know that I am in a particular mood but the mood does not match up with my life at this time. Next, I have a few ways that help me shift out of the mood that I have slipped into. One is that I listen to music that distracts my mind so I can remember that I am the one who can change my mBigquestionWoman 7ood. I can also sit in a quiet place and remember something that I care deeply about such as my wife or children. Now, I choose how I want to feel. LIke right now – I choose to feel creative, and so I am writing about this experience to you.

The ability to be aware of our moods is a key factor in being effective as a leader of a large corporation or a leader at home. I invite you to ask yourself right now, “What mood am I in?” and then “is it a mood that I choose to continue”. From there you will know what to do.

Until later,


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Author: Thomas White

Over the past thirty-five years, Thomas White has created and led private and public organizations that initiated breakthroughs in areas as diverse as computer software, publishing, printing, market research, leadership development and organizational change. The common ingredients in his success are simple. He looked beyond the limitations that others believed and found real solutions to needs that business leaders have. He attracted the best talent to translate these innovative solutions into practical products and services that were of high value to customers. He created cultures where people love what they do, work at their best and produce extraordinary results. In addition to his role as a business leader, Thomas has been a pioneer and inventor of technologies in the computer-networking field. He is a patent holder for innovations in business process and workflow technology. As part of his passion for educating others about the interface of human and computer systems, he was the co-author of “New Tools for New Times, The Workflow Paradigm”. He has also written articles for numerous publications. In 2001, he turned his attention from leading companies to supporting leadership teams in creating organizations of excellence. After many years of being a part of the machine of change, Thomas recognized that business is the most powerful force in the world. It has a major impact on public policy and governments everywhere. It is a key influence on how we use our resources and sets an example of the values that shape communities from local to global. He formed the consulting firm of Profoundly Simple to be a guide for exemplary leaders - leaders who wisely uses the power they are entrusted with to serve their constituencies first and themselves second; leaders who know that it is good business to treat people with respect, honor the environment and act with impeccable integrity – leaders who inspire greatness in those around them and by doing so create great organizations that are notable examples of success. Feeling the itch to get back into the game again, Thomas joined with two long time friends, to start the C-Suite Network. This network of business leaders offers an online network, events, services, and insights to its 500,000 member community. In addition, the C-Suite Network produces and distributes television and radio content to an audience of over 5M per month

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