What Is Emotional Intelligence In Your Own Words
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Over the past few years, emotional intelligence (“EI”) has become one of the most popular psychology concepts around. It looks at how well you control your emotions to determine if someone else is going to trust you or not, and whether you will get along with people consistently.
Many employers now require their staff to take an EI test as part of their employment process. Even though it seems like something only rich CEOs care about, there are many ways that improving your emotional literacy can help you to achieve your personal goals and even earn you some money!
In this article, we will talk more about what emotional intelligence is, why it matters, and then look at eight easy tips to improve your EQ.
Held up against other ‘soft skills’ such as negotiation or team work, however, there is very little consensus over what the term actually means.
Some experts believe that being emotionally intelligent just means having normal human feelings, while others define it as acting with rationality instead.
This article will focus on the first definition, but if you want to learn more about the second view then keep reading!
Disclaimer: The content in this article should be viewed with consideration – although they are worth learning, practicing, and developing, using them for yourself comes with responsibility.
So before you begin working on your own emotional intelligence, make sure you have considered the implications and where these strategies are appropriate.
Definition of self-awareness
Self-awareness is your sense of who you are, what your strengths and weaknesses are, and how you fit into other people’s perceptions of you.
This kind of understanding happens when you are conscious of yourself and your actions – whether they be thoughts, feelings or behaviors.
It also means being aware of why you made a particular choice.
Definition of self-control
Self-control is defined as “the ability to control oneself emotionally, mentally, and physically”. It is also referred to as emotional regulation or impulse control because it involves regulating your emotions and behaviors.
Self-control can be learned and improved through practice. There are several strategies that can help you develop your self-control and skills.
You may know this already, but practicing gratitude on a daily basis helps build self-control. This is because being grateful changes your perception of life and makes you feel happier.
Another way to increase self-control is by learning how to manage your stress. Taking breaks from work and hobbies reduces stress, which can have positive effects on self-control.
Last, knowing yourself well means understanding why you make certain decisions and what triggers an action. Having knowledge of yourself will help you regulate your behavior and emotions.
Definition of social awareness
Social awareness is your ability to recognize what emotions people around you are experiencing, and how these emotions influence their behavior.
Social awareness can play an important role in helping you understand other people and creating trust between you and others.
For example, if someone else feels hurt or frustrated after a conversation with you, they may avoid you or speak negatively about you to other people.
By knowing what those people have talked about since the last time you spoke to each other, you could determine whether their negative comments make sense.
If so, you could try to fix the problem by talking to them yourself. Or you could simply believe that they are not ready to talk yet.
Definition of relationships
In psychology, relationship theory comes down to one thing – how well you relate to people. It sounds simple, but it’s not!
That is why there are so many different theories about what makes for a healthy relationship. Some say it's having a good sense of humor, while others suggest that being able to communicate clearly and effectively is key.
Other theorists believe that being kind and compassionate towards your partners is important. Others think that agreeing to disagree and being willing to compromise make for healthier relationships.
But no matter which theory you choose, you have to agree that when you want something from someone, they should be willing to give it to you.
It may sound obvious, but too often we go after things that we want from our loved ones by making them feel guilty or obligated. This doesn’t work because it creates more stress than anything else.
If you need something, ask for it politely and with certainty that you will get it. Don’t threaten violence (or crying) if you don’t get your way, as this won’t help anyone.
Definition of motivation
Motivation is what gets you moving or keeping you moving from one place to another. It’s your internal state that drives you to do things.
It’s like how hungry you are — if you don’t eat anything, you will starve to death. If you just sit around eating nothing but healthy food, you will die!
By this definition, people with high emotional intelligence are more aware of their own emotions. They know why they feel certain ways about things and can be conscious of their feelings.
This helps them control their reactions to other people and situations, which typically leads to happier relationships and friendships.
They may even recognize when someone else isn’t as happy as they seem, and try to bring out the same happiness for that person. Or they could notice when someone is feeling down and give them some encouragement.
There are many strategies to develop our emotional literacy, including practicing acceptance and refusal, identifying and changing negative patterns, and altering perception of yourself and others. All of these help us achieve greater balance and keep ourselves motivated.
Definition of empathy
Empathy is understanding or feeling what others feel, which can be either internalized (feelings) or externalized. Internalizing emotions means to understand your own feelings, while externalizing them means identifying with someone else’s experience.
Some experts describe it as sensing how things make you feel and whether those feelings are good or bad for you. This comes more naturally to some people than others, but none of us is totally devoid of it.
Everyone has something they find difficult to empathize with. For example, one may not relate to people who do not take risks or try new things. Or maybe there is no one like their personal friend group that makes them feel comfortable.
It could be because they are too focused on their own success, or they don’t want what other people have. A lot of times, though, it’s just plain hard to relate to people who aren’t like you.
Definition of resilience
Resilience is your ability to bounce back after significant stress or trauma. It’s not just about being strong, it is also about having adequate resources that help you stay that way.
Resources include things like healthy relationships, education, employment, community support, etc. This seems obvious, but many people lack these resources so they don’t know how to deal with major setbacks.
Emotional intelligence (EI) has been linked to someone’s degree of resilience. While some may think that having more emotional control means they are more resilient, this isn’t always the case.
It can make things even harder by making you feel bad for having feelings. Some studies have actually found that highly emotionally controlled individuals are less likely to develop resilience because they avoid difficult situations and experiences.
This is why it is important to work on your emotional regulation skills, but only if you want to increase your resilience.
Definition of creativity
Being creative is not just doing something new or different, it is also defining what you do differently than someone else does already-you are always creating new styles, types, and strategies to achieve your goals.
Taking things one step further, being creative isn’t about having a knack for drawing or painting, it is exploring how you use tools to express yourself.
It is developing skills that have nothing to do with making art — communication, leadership, self-awareness, motivation, etc. All of these qualities play an important role in shaping who you are as a person and helping you to grow and succeed.
That said, there is no such thing as pure talent. We all have the same amount of innate talent we were given at birth, but some people develop their talents more than others.
Something that most intelligent individuals have in common is emotional intelligence (EI). This is referred to as “being smart” beyond the confines of academic knowledge and skill sets.
A lot of times, however, people apply IQ tests to determine if someone has high EI, when really they should be looking at the other dimensions of this quality – empathy, understanding emotions, and regulation of ones own emotions.
This article will go into detail on what makes up emotional intelligence and why it is so important to succeed in life.