Intro to Emotional Intelligence
Imagine…going through the same conflict. over. and. over. Imagine…behaving in such a manner that makes the situation even worse. Imagine…speaking or acting…before you think. Relationships, no matter what kind are inevitable. So not only can I imagine, I can relate…how about you? Nonetheless due to all of this, having grown not only weary but also curious…then finding a cure…I gladly introduce or remind you of the term – Emotional Intelligence (a.k.a. EI or EQ). Psychology Professor Peter Salovey from Yale University named this term and it is defined: “The ability to recognize our feelings and emotions, to motivate ourselves, to manage our emotions well in ourselves and in our relationships so they are expressed appropriately and effectively…enabling us to work together toward common goals.” This term was introduced almost 30 years ago, and it teaches us that cognition does not within itself make up human intelligence, but also by our social interactions and most importantly it includes our emotional responses.
A few may ask, “How do we become emotionally intelligent?” There are many points to research and consider however I am excited to share three of these steps to get us on the path to improving our Emotional Intelligence. Number one is self-awareness. The second is self-management. And the third is having a Purpose. Joshua Freedman, CEO of 6seconds.org states: “Emotional Intelligence is responsible for as much as 80% of the success we have in our lives.”
Going back to those repeated conflicts…it’s important we become more self-aware. Self-awareness is when we have that personal knowledge of ourselves, how we think, how we feel, how we behave…our moods & our habits. It’s where we understand our preferences, where our attention goes, and what excites us. It guides us into having a strong sense of self-worth and of our capabilities and get this: to see ourselves the way others see us, and it helps us in being reflective so we may take the time to learn from our mistakes. The benefits of self-awareness include handling stress, self-control…so we may learn what needs to change…within. It is the act of being mindful. It is imperative that we do this to know what effect we have on other people…in order to work carefully toward those common desires.
EI reminds us that our behaviors require the skill of self-management. This is where we can manage our thoughts and conduct in order to reach our aspirations. It is a way of handling our emotions so that they help us…not hinder our progress. This is where we recover easily from emotional distress and take responsibility for our actions. Knowing how to manage our emotions encourages us to be flexible, positive and persevere in the face of setbacks and frustrations. Self-management influences us to take the time to consciously identify several ways of responding to what life throws at us. This is to live with intent – exercising clear choices in how we want to live. Take notice that this also guides us to assist others to be open to being positive, making that relationship a win/win.
Lastly, why should we take time to develop a purpose? Our purpose is a motivation to carefully choose our short- and long-term choices, which gives us direction and reasons to evaluate our behavior. Our purpose should include the skill of empathy, being able to see the perspective of others, having a sense of what they hope for and how they feel, even without them saying it. Emotional intelligence is about encouraging others to feel safe. This is a safety that builds trust. When we have a purpose, the objective is to make ourselves genuinely valuable, then we have that ability bring that value to other people.
To summarize, when we are self-aware, we give ourselves the ability to self-mange, therefore giving birth to our purpose. To be intelligent in our emotions we must prepare ahead of time in order to be the best version of ourselves so that we can achieve…and receive the best from others. All of us want to feel respected and understood, on the other hand…when we are led by our survival emotions instead of us leading them, we put ourselves in a space of confusion and struggle. It is up to us to manage them effectively and appropriately to successfully arrive at the outcome we most desire! Quote from Daniel Goleman who wrote: “Emotional Intelligence why it matters more than IQ”, “We are not just smart by our talents and expertise, but how well we handle ourselves and others.”
Tiffany J. Norwood
Transformational Speaker and Emotional Intelligence Expert
Email: [email protected]
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