Playing Big Part 1: Emotions Drive Behavior

UNDERSTAnding the power of your emotions, accepting that they drive your behaviors, and learning to use your self-awareness to build an extraordinary life.



“Plan an emotional re-charge into your day by eating healthy and listening to your inspirational music” –Steve Gutzler

Over ten years ago I became a student of Emotional Intelligence which led to my participation in a four-day training workshop on the fascinating subject. I’ll never forget the first day. It was the day that entirely changed my understanding of leadership, relationships, and life.  The instructor was discussing the topic of emotions and their relationship to our lives. Then, he calmly stated: “Emotions drive behavior.”

For the first time, the words sunk in and stuck.

He then opened the workshop up for discussion and I considered the thoughts: “What about my values?” and “What about my faith?” and, suddenly, “I’m not just a jumbled ball of emotions!” I was feeling hot and frustrated by the instructor’s statement. I was wound up! I was going to prove him wrong. I could feel my temperature beginning to rise, my heart rate begin to quicken, my palms dampen, my lip protest from being bitten, my brow furrow. The instructor spotted me. He pointed out that I seemed to have a strong opinion on the discussion topic. Suddenly, I realized I had become… dare I say it… emotional!

What I learned that day was that my emotions are driving my behaviors. While there are other parts of our lives that are important to us, we need to realize that we are emotional about those elements, which is why they are important to us. My emotional, spiritual, and physical are all intertwined. They each affect each other and, in turn, can affect us and our behaviors.

Not everything we do is driven by our emotions. Not every behavior is dictated by some emotional discharge in our brain. But the majority of our choice of words, our responses to life’s challenges, our performances (for good or bad) are driven by our emotions.

I’ve slowly moved to believe that the majority of my emotional, spiritual, and physical are linked. Every day I am working to be aware of myself and the effect of my actions and emotions on others. Since that workshop ten years ago I have developed my emotional intelligence. But it is a daily journey.

Even though I have been actively working on this for ten years, the other day I was very low on blood sugar because I had not eaten in over eight hours and sure enough it affected my behavior during a stressful meeting. After the meeting I grabbed a quick bite to eat and… Bingo! I suddenly felt enormously better and quickly realized, “Steve, when are you going to learn to stay fueled?” I could have simply snacked on something healthy before the meeting to restore my blood sugar and I would have been able to balance my emotions more effectively despite the intensity of the meeting. I would have had a different result entirely.

Play Big: Key Pointers

  • Be self-aware of emotions driving your behaviors
  • Eat more often- especially healthy snacks
  • Work on yourself first
  • Understand how emotions drive our behaviors
  • Watch you moods and attitudes, they are contagious

Play Big Training

Steve’s one day training on Emotional Intelligence for Extraordinary Leadership will transform your team’s effectiveness.

Harness the power of the Number 1 predictor of professional success and personal performance

  • Perfect for sales teams
  • Team organizations seeking better performance and results
  • Managers and leaders becoming effective in bringing out the best in the team
  • How to build fierce loyalty with customers using Emotional Intelligence

Contact Steve:

5 responses to “Playing Big Part 1: Emotions Drive Behavior

  1. Steve!
    Another great post! This is only the first post and I already feel like I am getting great insight into the secrets of how to improve my emotional intelligence. I love that you are real with us about your own experiences, it give me confidence that I will be able to make great strides as well even in the face of challenge and when I take steps backwards.
    Brooke Hubbard

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