Tips for managing your emotions as an entrepreneur

Tips for managing your emotions as an entrepreneur

By |2019-03-13T12:39:40+11:00March 13th, 2019|Blog|0 Comments

Being an entrepreneur evokes all the emotions.

Ever wondered how many emotions a human can experience? Amazingly, it’s about 34,000.

No wonder we often have trouble recognising and articulating our emotions, especially when under the pressure that small business can create.

Understanding, managing and using emotions as an entrepreneur

Sometimes it’s hard to put a finger on how or what we are feeling. A more generalised descriptor such as “happy” “stressed” or “sad” is likely to come to mind first. Digging a little deeper might uncover more accurate feelings and emotions that better describe your current mood or behaviour, giving us tools to process them more constructively and freeing up important inner resources for your business.

Why Emotional Intelligence (EI) is a crucial skill for leading a business

  • A high level of EI improves our ability to read those around us and therefore helps us make more effective decisions – our staff, our clients, our business relationships
  • EI builds resilience – studies show that high EI is often accompanied by mental agility and adaptability
  • It helps us develop a more sophisticated emotional language and improve our communication skills
  • Creates insight into the ‘why’ of our feelings. For instance, if we can shift thinking from “I am sad” to “I am feeling sad because I feel… (example: ashamed, fragile, remorseful)” we can treat the cause, rather than focus on the effect

Good news – Emotional Intelligence can be developed

The good news is, EI can be practiced and developed over time. If you struggle to manage and understand the emotions running your own business can create, it might be time to work on this inner resource.

One way is to reflect during the times you experience strong emotions, using the emotions wheel exercise.

The Emotions Wheel

There are two approaches for using the Emotions Wheel:


Referring to the Emotions Wheel, identify the feeling you are experiencing on the outer ring and rate the intensity of the feeling. Weigh the feeling with a modifier if you can (just a little, quite, very, extremely). Drill down further into the centre of the wheel to unearth the primary emotion that is associated with the emotion you’ve identified above.

I am feeling (use a modifier ‘just a little, quite, very, extremely’):

Referring to the Emotions Wheel, what is the core emotion associated with what you are feeling?

I am feeling:

Which is connected to the primary emotion of:

If I simplify my feeling of:

…to its primary emotion of:

I can see I’m feeling this way because:

Ask yourself: why am I feeling that way? What is influencing me to feel that way?

If I think of the primary emotion connected to this feeling, it makes me realise that:

With the primary emotion in mind, I might need to:

What can we do to accept this emotion? How could we use this emotion for good?


You can also use the Emotions Wheel in the opposite direction.

If you are having trouble describing your feelings today, start at the core of the wheel with the primary emotions.

Articulate these primary emotions with more sophistication by moving to the outer edges of the wheel in the same colour wedge and find an emotion that better describes how you are feeling.

I am feeling (use a modifier ‘just a little, quite, very, extremely’):

What is a more descriptive articulation of the emotion you might be feeling?

Ask yourself: why am I feeling that way? What is influencing me to feel that way?

How am I letting that emotion come and go in my life, without holding it down, glossing over it, pretending it’s not there?

What can we do to accept this emotion? How could we use this emotion for good?


Small business leadership provides an opportunity to feel all of the intense emotions. Furthermore, learning how to more effectively label and articulate our emotions is a skill that all small business owners should practice. The best news is: you can test your own Emotional Intelligence through the MSCEIT, of which Craft are accredited providers.

Reach out if we can help you with a coaching session to assess where you currently sit, and to design strategies to help you build your Emotional Intelligence.

Craft is led by Melbourne based coach and consultant Ami Summers.

Ami has spent more than a decade as an accredited coach and leadership development consultant.

Clients that have worked with Ami consistently say she is a compassionate, wise and deeply pragmatic coach with a gift for empowering the individual or business owner to see they have the resources to transform themselves and the world around them.

She is accredited and experienced to deliver a number of diagnostic tools to help unlock an individual or teams capability and strengths.

Craft’s main focus is to deliver valuable business results whilst bringing out the best in an individual or business. We do this by sharing creative leadership tools that are typically only available to large corporates. We offer individual coaching, leadership development consulting services, group mentoring and small business coaching. Get in touch if we can help you bring more insight into your business.

Visit our Website

Email us for the full Emotions Wheel Exercise

Book a session online