THE KING, POWERFUL AS AN ORISA
The Yoruba practice divine kingship, through which the monarch is recognized as a living representation of the Orisa. Consequently, the king enjoys absolute authority. He owns the land and all who dwell upon it. Whatever the king demands is what shall be done.
In Oyo Kingdom, for example, Alaafin Odarawu ordered the destruction of a town called Ojo-segi simply because he was disrespected in the market by a trader there.
As a result of his aggressive temperament, however, Alaafin Odarawu was subsequently dethroned. He was succeeded by Alaafin Kanran, who was an unmitigated tyrant. Next, there was Alaafin Jayin, who was effeminate and indecisive. He was followed by Alaafin Ayibi, the cruel and arbitrary Then, there was Alaafin Osinyago, the worthless. 
THE POWER OF EMOTIONS
When I contemplate the lessons learned from the four failed kings mentioned above, one thing becomes clear; a leader who lacks emotional maturity will create universal chaos in his home, organization or community.
Stated differently, when you learn to manage your emotions, you improve the quality of your energy. The goal is simple; no matter what is happening in your environment, your vibration should remain consistent with excellence. This is only possible to the extent that you are properly managing your emotions.
In order to manage your emotions more effectively, you must get into the habit of being aware of how you feel at various points of the day. Maybe you're especially anxious about a weekly meeting. Perhaps a certain project or member of your team is causing you a lot of insecurity. What ever the case may be, the first step toward total empowerment and effective leadership is to recognize the power of your own emotions.
Most people are already aware of the fact that they perform better when they are experiencing positive energy. But what happens to your performance when you're feeling anything other than positive energy?
"Confronted with relentless demands and unexpected challenges, people tend to slip into negative emotions - fight or flight mode - often multiple times in a day. They become irritable and impatient, or anxious and insecure. Such states of mind drain people's energy and cause friction in their relationships." 
As a king, irritability, impatience, anxiety and insecurity are strict taboos. Thus, any monarch who lacks emotional maturity will fail miserably.
LIMITS OF POWER
During the 17th century, Oyo Kingdom was plagued by a succession of failed monarchs. This meant that the political leadership of Oyo kingdom had to be busier than ever, dethroning one king and replacing him with another. More precisely, the Oyo Mesi, the council of kingmakers, managed political succession in the face of ongoing instability.
When the king lacks emotional maturity, the council of kingmakers will do what they can to balance his energy. When balance cannot be achieved, the kingmakers will invoke the ritual of sì ìgbà àwo.
"For someone to sì ìgbà àwo means he open the calabash of death. He voluntarily leaves this world. This is common among the kings and warriors or powerful people in the olden days. Many kings did that voluntarily or by force when their time on the throne failed to bring peace and harmony." 
The Oyo Mesi use the sì ìgbà àwo ritual to regulate the negative effects of the king's emotional energy. Fortunately, there are other rituals that leaders can perform in order to manage their own negative energy.
Orisa Lifestyle teaches us that energy flows through FOUR primary channels; physical, emotional, spiritual and mental. Here, I will share four simple rituals you can perform for defusing negative emotions.
Ara: Physical Energy
When negative emotions arise, one simple, yet powerful ritual is to engage in some form of physical activity; in the midst of high anxiety situations, it is acceptable for you to stop what you're doing to dance, take a walk, do some squats; anything that requires gross motor skills.
"Because the physical body must support the entire duration of your spiritual mission, it must be maintained and conditioned accordingly... Furthermore, in the exact same way that the body is fundamental to personal existence, the body is also an archetypal symbol of collective consciousness. That is, the body represents that which is most personal and most universal at the same time. Consequently, when you explore the theology of Orisa Lifestyle, you will discover the various body parts as analogous to major principles of life." s of life.
Okan: Emotional Energy
Another ritual that purifies negative emotions is to express gratitude. It can take the form of a spoken prayer, praising someone for a job well done or merely saying "thank you."
"The more clearly you understand the relationship between your feelings and your performance, the easier it is to become inspired by your personal vision, values and goals. This is what we call eri okan, which means observation of the heart. It is akin to emotional intelligence. As you deepen your connection to ieri okan, you also develop empathy, or the ability to understand the feelings of others. As such, the virtuous cycle of emotion, performance and continual improvement cleanses your emotional energy, as well as your social presence. In this way, our hearts exchange emotional energy with one another, our families and our communities, including the ancestors." 
Emi: Spiritual Energy
This is perhaps the simplest, yet most powerful ritual you can perform when you're experiencing negative emotions and the energy they create. Just take a long, deep breath. Inhale into your stomach - not your chest - and release the breath slowly, for eight to ten seconds.
Emi is is closely associated with the breath and the whole mechanism of breathing, which is its most expressive manifestation. However, while the fact that a man breathes is proof that emi is in him, the breath is not life itself. In reality, emi is causative of breath and so it is the breather; that which breathes in man. Emi belongs to the Olodumare. It resides in the lungs and is fed through the nostrils, just as the blacksmith's fire is fed through the twin openings of the bellows. 
When you practice deep abdominal breathing, it induces a state of total relaxation that can reset your emotional energy.
Ori: Mental Energy
Finally, one of the most enduring rituals you can perform in the midst of negative emotions is to change the stories you tell yourself about who you are and what you represent.
If you're like most people, when things don't go your way, you tend to play the role of the hapless victim. You blame other people or external circumstances for your hardships, failures and discomfort.
However, there is a huge difference between the facts and how you interpret them. More importantly, your interpretation is largely based on your story.
Stop talking about what people did to you. You are not a victim. Start talking about your decisions and how those decisions lead you to the place where you encountered certain experiences. You are a decision maker.
Ori is the designator. It is responsible for your prenatal choice, which we call akunleyan. "Ori organizes mental energy, primarily through images that carry meaning, facilitate imagination and enable learning. Images provide frameworks for perception. We hold mental images of how we want to perceive ourselves and our environments. Similarly, we hold mental images of how we want to be perceived by other people. 
The mental images are brought to life by your stories. If you truly intend to heal your life, start with your stories.
In the same way that the Oyo Mesi regulate the king's power, these four rituals can help you neutralize your negative energy.
BASORUN GAA, THE TYRANT
Sometimes, it is difficult to manage our emotions in the midst of negativity. We start off with good intentions but get swept up in petty feuds or trivial pursuits. We get greedy. We become fearful. Our internal contradictions get the best of us. We fail.
As fate would have it, Basorun Gaa was the head of the Oyo Mesi during Oyo's tumultuous time. In the process of supervising and executing the death of four Alaafins in quick succession, he became exceedingly powerful. Above and beyond his political influence, Basorun Gaa was also known to possess great spiritual power; for example, he could shape shift into any animal at will.
As the Basorun of Oyo, Gaa's duty was to fight tyranny. Unfortunately, he became a feared tyrant himself. That is, he hijacked the political and economic power of Oyo kingdom. Basorun Gaa aided and abetted crimes committed by members of his household, including murder. He had his wife's entire family massacred when some of them attempted to poison him. Power drunk, Basorun Gaa became a classical tyrant.
In the end, however, Basorun Gaa was tied to a stake at Akesan market, where Alaafin Abiodun ordered that every citizen cut a piece of flesh from his living body and drop it in a huge fire in front of him. Upon his death, the remains of his body were burnt to prevent his reincarnation.
Gaa's public execution is the basis of a popular saying in Yoruba land:
“Bi o laya ko seka, sugbon bi o ba ranti iku Gaa ki o so oto”.
“If you are brave, venture into wickedness, but if you remember Gaa’s death, adhere to the truth”. 
It means, successful leaders must be upright or face dire consequences.
I am looking for leaders who are dedicated to improving the world through positive influence. Is that you? If so, visit ObafemiO.com and find out how Obafemi Origunwa and the Orisa Lifestyle Academy can help you take your life and your practice to the highest level.
 Sherif, Oshin. Bashorun Gaa: Oyo-Ile’s Unforgotten Tyrant And His End
 Schwartz and McCarthy. Manage Your Energy, Not Your Time.
 Okemuyiwa, Lanre. Personal communication.
 Origunwa, Obafemi. Fundamentals of Orisa Lifestyle. Pg 29
 Origunwa, Obafemi. Fundamentals of Orisa Lifestyle. Pg 36
 Origunwa, Obafemi. Fundamentals of Orisa Lifestyle. Pg 38
 Origunwa, Obafemi. Fundamentals of Orisa Lifestyle. Pg 40
  Sherif, Oshin. Bashorun Gaa: Oyo-Ile’s Unforgotten Tyrant And His End
Live the Medicine
Obafemi Origunwa, MA
Thought leader, Ifa priest and author of four definitive books, Obafemi Origunwa inspires metamorphosis through living the medicine that will heal your life and heal the lives of the people you're destined to serve.