How to Keep Your Emotions out of Sales
When you run your own business, you may find it easy to tangle your emotions with a transaction that shouldn’t be affecting you on a personal level. But many entrepreneurs equate their businesses with their identities, so they have trouble separating the two.
Even salespeople who aren’t necessarily business owners struggle with not taking rejection personally, and they allow it to affect their performance. It’s such a widespread problem that getting emotionally involved is the fifth most powerful weakness found in salespeople, according to the Objective Management Group.
How can you keep your emotions out of sales so that the “no’s” don’t end up eating you alive? In this article, we’ll share some important tips for keeping your emotions at bay so you can stay sane and continue moving forward, even when you’re not closing.
Work on yourself first
Separating your emotions from sales starts with yourself. You need to understand how to distance yourself from your emotions when they bubble up so they don’t affect you so dramatically.
If you’re already experiencing stress in your life, like rowdy children, financial hardship, or a divorce, then you’ll probably be more prone to extreme emotion. To keep yourself calm and centered, try going for walks, exercising, meditating, reading, eating healthy foods, or taking a vacation.
Achieving a work/life balance can be difficult for a salesperson because the nature of their work is driven by the belief that time is money. So it’s easy to conclude that when you carve out time to practice self-care, you’re taking time away from potential business. That is not the case, however, because we all need to maintain a work–life balance to perform at our best. If you worked at a factory and the manager never maintained any of the equipment, it would have been no surprise when something broke down.
The same goes for humans: we either make time for self-care and lifestyle maintenance, or we eventually break down.
Channel your emotions
If you tend to get down on yourself or get angry when you don’t make a sale, then think about how you can channel that emotional reactivity in a positive way. The good news is that you have strong emotions. Now, you just have to make the most of them.
Take that intensity and transform it into motivation so you’re more motivated to chase new leads. Or shift the strong emotion into passion or enthusiasm so you feel more excited to talk about your product or service with the next person. Use that emotional energy for good. Don’t linger on a failure. A failure is a thing that happened; it’s not a disease that needs to infect your mind.
“Remember that failure is an event, not a person. Yesterday ended last night.” – Zig Ziglar
A simple bullet journal kept within your day planner can help you channel your emotions. Keeping track of your emotions can help you recognize and mitigate any negative patterns. Write down how you feel when you come in, when you reach the middle of the day, and when you are about to leave.
If you notice there’s a particular task or time in your day where you tend to feel bad, try incorporating a pick me up afterward to balance your mood: take a coffee/lunch break, get some fresh air, chat with a coworker who has a positive vibe.
Get curious about your emotions
Your emotional reaction isn’t only about the situation; it’s likely about something you feel about yourself. For example, if you feel very sad or self-conscious every time you lose a sale, you may ultimately feel unsure about your own sales abilities. If you felt more confident, perhaps every “no” wouldn’t hit you so hard.
Sometimes, frustration is simply related to our natural resistance to change. Resistance to change is normal for any individual or organization, and even something as simple as a minor policy change could be stressing you out.
Stop feeling frustrated about your emotions, and start using them as a tool to help you become a better, more even-tempered salesperson.
If you’re serious about working on your emotional reactions, there are lots of tools available to help. Guidebooks, journals, mindfulness practice, and mental health professionals are all valuable resources to try. You can also ask your spouse or those you live with what they observe about your emotional state. It’s likely that they can provide some insight.
Find outlets for your more negative emotions
Finding a method or a hobby that sustains your emotions will also help: Along with all of the health benefits it provides, exercise helps your body release negativity. Arts and crafts allow you to be creative, express yourself, and create something others can enjoy. Reading or games offer escapism, providing you with a way to be someone else or go somewhere else for a while. Try incorporating at least one of these suggestions, and see if it alters your emotional state for the better.
When you are aware of your negative emotions, you can better address them. Whatever method you use to practice this will have helpful long-term effects, mitigating the harmful effects of negative emotions.