The Emotion Regulation Facet in Leadership and Education

The Emotion Regulation Facet in Leadership and Education

Copyright: © 2015 |Pages: 12
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-4666-8327-3.ch009

Abstract

The purpose of this chapter is to examine how leaders promote the emotion regulation facet of trait EI in their leadership via dissociation, reframing, and coping. In addition, this chapter also explores how educators can promote the emotion regulation facet in their classrooms by discussing emotional regulation in the classroom, and how they can embrace their roles as leaders in the classroom in order by using reframing and coping techniques. Finally, this chapter also illustrates the positions of those who oppose the promotion of the emotion regulation facet in leadership and education.
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Introduction

Anybody can become angry—that is easy, but to be angry with the right person and to the right degree and at the right time and for the right purpose, and in the right way—that is not within everybody’s power and is not easy. -Aristotle

Stan Lee and Jack Kirby created the character of Bruce Banner®/The Incredible Hulk®. Now, for those of you who do not know, Dr. Banner® was a very mild-mannered scientist, until one day, he experienced an accidental exposure to gamma radiation, which transformed him into The Incredible Hulk® when he became angry. The Incredible Hulk® was a large green creature who loved to smash things, and who would always use his rage in order to save the day in the Marvel® comic universe. However, Dr. Banner® was afraid of the destruction caused by his alter ego, and, therefore, he devoted his entire life to regulating his emotions lest he unleash the green beast upon the world inadvertently.

Petrides (2009b) defines the emotion regulation facet as individuals who are “capable of controlling their emotions’ (p. 5), on a “short-, medium-, and long-term” (Petrides, 2001, p. 3) basis. Which also includes the ability of an individual to “have control over their emotions and change unpleasant moods or prolong pleasant moods through personal insight and effort” (p. 59), and be “psychologically stable and they know how to pick themselves up after emotional setbacks” (Petrides, 2009a, p. 59). All of which are factors crucial to maintaining control of one’s emotions for leaders and educators alike. Although educators and leaders do not turn into giant, green, smashing monsters when angry, the facet known as emotion regulation still plays an integral part in both leadership and education. Lack of emotional regulation on the part of a leader or an educator can disintegrate the quality of the leader/follower or educator/student relationship, and annihilate a positive and psychologically safe environment.

Therefore, in order to prevent such disintegration and annihilation, this chapter meets the following objectives:

  • Portray how leaders can promote the emotion regulation facet in their leadership via the practices of dissociation, and using reframing and coping techniques when things do not go according to plan.

  • Illustrate how educators can promote the emotion regulation facet in their classrooms by practicing emotion regulation in the classroom, and embracing their roles as leaders in the classroom by using reframing and coping techniques.

  • Finally, this chapter will represent the paradigms of those who oppose the promotion of the emotion regulation facet in leadership and education.

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The Self-Control Factor

The self-control factor deals specifically with the ability of an individual to have “a healthy degree of control over their urges and desires” (Petrides, 2009a, p. 61). In addition, the self-control factor of trait EI also involves the ability of an individual to regulate “external pressures and stress,” (Petrides, 2009b, p. 95) and they are neither “repressed nor overly expressive” (Petrides, 2009a, p. 61). The self-control factor of trait EI comprises the emotion regulation, impulsiveness (low), and stress management facets (Petrides, 2001, 2009a, 2009b), all of which are central to both effective leadership and education. This centralization exists since a rash outburst from a leader or educator can irrevocably damage the quality of the leader/follower relationship or the educator/student relationship (Bass & Bass, 2008; Goleman, Boyatzis, & McKee, 2002; Mortiboys, 2012; Powell & Kusuma-Powell, 2010).

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