How to stop responding to bad impulses/tendencies

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We have all felt anger, sadness, frustration, and a bunch of other feelings. Trying to solve problems while you’re looking at the world through the lens of emotion can be hard.

Emotions tend to lead us to impulses that result in unfavorable consequences. Think of the time someone got you mad and you responded back to them. Did responding to your feelings make you a better person, did you gain anything from acting on emotional impulses? 

Emotions are capable of making humans do horrible things. Think about Hitler, he killed 6 million innocent jews because he felt angry about Germany’s loss in WW1.  Quite terrifying. 

One way to disarm your emotions is to ask yourself why you feel that particular way, questioning the emotion will dilute the emotions legitimacy, and power.

Pericles (Athenian politician) would always analyze and question his feelings to calm down. Sometimes he would have to physically remove himself from the argument to calm down and remain neutral. 

Pericles was an amazing leader because he knew how to disarm his emotions and consider all opinions to come up with the best strategy for Athens. He was able to put the interest of Athens before anything else.

Under his leadership, Athens was able to thrive. Unfortunately, when he lost power. Athens lost control and once again had leaders that prioritized their interests and looked at the world from the emotional lens.

In fact, one could argue emotion and ego is the whole reason our democracy and nations are so fragile. It takes one person’s ego and emotional impulse to destroy a whole nation. 

Book: Laws of Human Nature by Robert Greene (Amazon)

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