B Calm and B Corp
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B Calm and B Corp

Business and the Circularity of Emotions

The world in which we live is driven by circularity. Everything in life emerges from below to above, to then sink down and re-emerge once more. One thing I have noticed many times is that during this wonderful process of circulation things have a tendency to get amplified. Think of it in terms of expansion and contraction, or inhaling and exhaling. There are plenty of examples that outline how this wonderful process works.

The principle of circularity also applies to emotions and can be said to regulate them. Let me give you an example to illustrate this better.

During my professional life I have taken part in many projects. Some of these proceeded smoothly, with both workers and customers feeling a sense of happiness whilst working on them. Other projects were not so good and the predominant emotion which was felt by all parties was frustration. What was the difference?

The way I see it, there are two main circular patterns that an emotion can follow, which I call WEIRD and POINTED. WEIRD indicating Where Expectations fall to Illusions and then Delusions, and POINTED which I use to remember that emotions created in a circularity pattern can be greatly amplified: where your Protection goes over interests through Devotion and Enthusiasm. Let’s look at this more closely.

In the WEIRD pattern of circularity of an emotion you would have an initial idea and would imagine what it would look like in the future. You would visualise possible future scenarios that might unfold from this initial idea. Your visualization would then bring you to a process of identifying different goals that you would have to reach to make this future real. In essence, you are building Expectations.

Expectations are great in getting you to work towards your goals, but they can also be very dangerous: they create the illusion of a possible future that might occur, and towards which we concentrate our efforts. To give you an example, think about a situation in which you meet a wonderful partner, and you immediately visualize a family, children and so on. Or perhaps you are working on a Business Model, investing much of your time and energy in this and dreaming about the money that will come into your bank account.

As you work towards your goals you are proud to be getting closer to your expectations with the illusion (or projection) of fulfilling them. By this I don’t mean to suggest that expectations are a bad thing to have; I am simply warning that they are a clue to a situation in which illusion is confused with enthusiasm: you live for the sole purpose of fulfilling your expectations, rather than honoring your mission.

The POINTED approach to an emotion or situation evolves quite differently: in this approach you would follow a Purpose and make small corrections and changes as you live your life day by day, improving as you go along. Rather than project a future expectation and work solely towards that, you would have a more general purpose, or mission, and take a small step each day in the direction of your purpose. An example of this could be when you sense and adapt to a changing situation rather than fighting it and doing all you can to reach your goals no matter what. With this approach, your goals and expectations are allowed to change over time. Think of a business situation again: when you make budget plans, you are creating expectations that must be fulfilled. If you don’t make a budget plan ahead, but simply use available resources wisely as different situations arise and evolve, you will not experience the delusion of not reaching the goals you had planned.

The circularity in this case would be driven by enthusiasm, not expectation, which would bring you to the process of devotion and protection, rather than illusion and delusion. Delusion is particularly problematic because it will make you experience sadness and label the situation as “bad”. This will create a bias for future similar situations.

In conclusion, throughout my life I have come to identify two circular patterns that keep repeating themselves. I do my best to stay away from the WEIRD pattern and not fall into the Illusion/Delusion trap. What I strive to do is follow a POINTED approach to emotions and situations, in which I have a purpose that I nurture and devote myself to day by day, without projecting future scenarios but simply living and sensing the changing processes day by day.

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Francesco Mondora

Francesco Mondora

co CEO and founder @mondora, first IT Bcorp in europe | Cloud Trusted Advisor, Coach and Public speaker | Serial entrepeneur | Biodynamic geek

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