How is your Emotional Bank Account Doing?

Karen Fleming

Over the past 2 weeks, I've been coaching alot of people on the topic of emotional resilience. No-one underestimates the pressure we all feel from time to time when work stressors build up. But, during the lockdown, as we live and work in a restrictive and somewhat alien environment, the resilience of our workforce is being tested to the limit.

Being emotionally resilient means having the capacity to remain flexible in your thoughts, feeling and behaviours when faced with a life disruption or extended periods of pressure. It’s also about adapting and emerging stronger, wiser and more able.

Your emotional bank account

Resilience is not just there one minute and gone the next; like our financial bank accounts, our levels of resilience build up, and can get depleted over time. Little knocks can take their toll, and each one will eat into your emotional ‘credit’.  If your emotional bank account was low on funds before the pandemic, chances are that you’re feeling more than a little overdrawn right now.   But what can you do to put your account back into credit?

3 strategies to develop your resilience

1.    Raise your self-awareness. When we become self-aware and understand and learn how to manage our triggers and emotional reactions, we feel more in control. Focusing on what we can do rather than what we can't control is good for our wellbeing.

2.    Rediscover the strategies that worked for you in the past. We all have a tendency to forget how well we dealt with past, negative events. OK, so none of us have experienced a global pandemic and weeks of lockdown in our lifetime; recall past situations where you faced adversity and emerged stronger. Identify the resources that you drew on, and recall what it was you did that made a positive difference.

3.    Don't underestimate how much the little things can make a big difference. It could be making an effort to face-time colleagues or friends rather than messaging them, or getting outside in the garden for an extra hour a day. Each of us will have our own individual strategies for topping up our emotional bank accounts.

That guilty feeling

Of course, this is all easier said than done. And, what I am seeing is a whole stack of other emotions that prevent people from attending to their self care. Guilt is a big one for people. Guilt that colleagues or friends are out there on the front line and risking their lives when we are self isolating or working at home. Guilt for wanting to finish work on time when everyone else answers their emails long into the night. And guilt for attending to our own self care.

How to access these resources and not feel guilty

Accessing the resources and answers we need to top up our emotional bank accounts isn't always something we can do alone. That's where a coach comes in. A coach who will facilitate your thinking, support you to access the resources you need, and hold you accountable for keeping your emotional bank account well and truly in credit.


Karen Fleming is a qualified Life Coach, Business Coach and Management Trainer, a Master Practitioner of NLP (Neuro Linguistic Programming), and Time Line Therapy, Advanced Facilitator of the Emotions and Behaviours at Work (EBW) psychometric for Emotional Intelligence, and a Licensed Motivational Maps™ Practitioner.

Masks and Mirrors is currently offering a range of probono and cut price services to support people in business through the current crisis.