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The Importance of Evaluating Your Emotional Mindset in the Workplace (And How That Increases Sales)

By Star Report 2 min read

They say that it takes more muscles to frown than to smile. In real estate, a smile is practically part of the uniform. We train all of our agents to be welcoming, accommodating, and professional, even during the inevitable challenges that come with any type of sale. We may find ourselves hoping that if we smile enough during a difficult situation, our mood will somehow pick up these positive brainwaves.

Research that was done at Penn State University by Industrial & Organizational Psychologist Alicia Grandey looked at "a type of work where instead of physical labor, where [people use] muscles to perform the work, [they instead use] emotions to perform the work." Grandey aptly deemed this as "emotional labor."

Most of us can relate to this "emotional labor" phenomenon. We need that sale and feel desperate to make it happen, all the while appearing unrushed, relaxed, and personable as we present the home to a customer. Maybe we spend hours helping a recent buyer move past their buyer's remorse, while internally lamenting a missed meal with our family. Regardless of the specific situation, Grandey argues that faking a relaxed sense of contentment "creates a sense of dissonance between internal and external states over a long period of time, [creating] physical tension which can build up and create health issues, and over time result in job burnout."

So, what do we do with this disconcerting information? The majority of us love what we do and therefore make sacrifices and bare through difficult situations in the workplace. However, this research should act as a helpful advisory as we evaluate our own emotional state in our professional role. In addition to our own mental health, it's important to realize that approaching our clients and customers with genuine and sincere positivity will bring the best sales results. If we truly believe in our product and consider it something that's worth selling and worth your "emotional labor," then we are committing ourselves to our buyers in the most effective manner. 

While outside factors (friends, family, and personal relationships) often play a part in positive mental health in the workplace, knowing when you need to readjust your mindset and make changes in your daily routine is vital to a healthy and successful career. Take this research onto the sales floor and reduce any negative mindsets that you may have, in order to move towards a long-term, fulfilling career. 

Originally published Dec 7, 2015 under Explore the latest topics, updated December 17, 2021

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