When Does Emotional Intelligence Begin To Develop
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Over the past few years, emotional intelligence (EI) has become one of the most popular leadership theories in the business world. It looks at how well you manage your own emotions and those of others to achieve success.
Many believe that it can be learned like other skills such as reading or writing. Some even say that it is an essential skill for anyone wishing to succeed in life.
But what does the research say about whether it is truly a universal talent? And if it is, when do people begin to develop it?
We all have different levels of EI, but some are better than others. However, there’s no way to know which ones are until we're given a test.
So, here's our question: Is being emotionally intelligent something everyone has, or is it just part of the human condition? If the later is true, then when would someone first get trained in their EQ-ness?
Fortunately, science offers us some clues. Here are the top ten things that influence young kids' social development and empathy.
The Early Years
There are several theories about what makes someone develop emotional intelligence (EI). One of these is that early experiences shape your personality as you get older.
If this theory was true, then it would be easy to say that kids who are raised in stable homes with supportive parents and teachers will probably have higher EI than those who grow up in less stable environments.
However, another theory suggests that people with high levels of empathy are born not made. They are naturally inclined to put yourself in other person’s shoes and understand their emotions, which helps them form attachments and relationships.
A third theory argues that some individuals are just more socially intelligent than others and thus learn how to relate to other people at an earlier age. This doesn’t mean they become self-centered, though – only that they know how to use social interactions to achieve personal goals.
Whatever the case may be, research shows that children under six years old don’t really care much about anyone but themselves.
As young children, they aren’t very aware of or concerned with whether other people like them or not. They are also incapable of sharing thoughts and feelings except with adults.
It isn’t until around ages seven and eight when children begin to show signs of developing empathy. At this stage, they can recognize and respond to nonverbal cues such as facial expressions and tone of voice.
The Middle Years
In your middle years, you’ll find that emotional intelligence begins to develop. This is a good thing!
As we mentioned before, emotional quotients (or EQs) come in three main areas: self-awareness, motivation, and relationship management.
It's important to note here that it takes repeated experiences of these skills to increase your EQ as a person.
So while some people are naturally more aware of their emotions than others, this doesn't make them have higher overall EQs. It just makes them more likely to recognize and understand their own feelings.
On the other hand, someone who is very emotionally intelligent may not use all three parts of EQ frequently, but when they do, they use them well.
Self-awareness includes things like being able to identify what emotion you're feeling and what might be influencing those feelings.
Motivation refers to understanding how much effort you want to put into something and why you should invest such energy in that activity.
And lastly, relationship management involves understanding how to manage relationships that depend on cooperation or friendship.
All three of these concepts become easier as you age because older adults tend to relate to other people more seriously and consistently. They also feel more motivated towards activities due to an increased sense of responsibility and urgency to succeed.
The Adolescent Years
During adolescence, emotional intelligence (EI) really begins to develop. This is an important time period for individuals’ development. As mentioned before, socialization is one of the most significant factors in developing your EI.
So, how does this relate to what we were talking about? Well, as children, you need to learn how to interact with others – how to communicate, be motivated by other people, and understand different emotions. These lessons continue into adulthood, but it goes more in-depth.
As adolescents, your moods can become very volatile. You may feel like everything you do doesn’t matter, so there are no consequences to your actions. On the contrary, however, when you try hard to make something work, you feel even worse because you know you could have failed.
This comes from feeling stressed about yourself and your inability to succeed. All these negative feelings add up and influence each other, creating a toxic environment that is not healthy for growth.
The Adult Years
As we mentioned before, emotional intelligence is something that develops as you grow older. It’s not suddenly there one day when you feel more compassionate or understanding of other people. Rather, it cultivates over time through experiences in your life, interactions with others, and situations where you show compassion.
In fact, some experts say that developing emotional skills isn’t even necessary until adulthood due to how protective adults are of each other.
As we get older, however, this protection sometimes breaks down. This is why it can be difficult to connect with people our age. We're no longer guaranteed support from those around us.
But instead of avoiding these people because you don't have anyone else, try using strategies like empathy to understand what they go through and help them feel better. - Steven J Miller
Emotional literacy comes later, but social competence is always present – it just varies in degree depending on your age. What works for twenty year olds may not work so well for thirty-year-olds, for example, and vise versa.
When you develop emotional intelligence, you learn to identify and manage your emotions, use appropriate levels of emotion, and recognize the emotions of others. You also know how to respond to different types of emotional stimuli in order to succeed in relationships and career settings.
Emotional Intelligence and Career Success
In fact, there is now substantial evidence that emotional intelligence (EI) skills are an essential part of career success. The importance of these skills has been growing steadily in recognition for several years now.
Emotional quotient or EQ as it’s often referred to in the literature is one of five major factors that make up someone’s overall EI. It looks at how well you manage your emotions and what effect those emotions have on others.
Other important components include understanding other people, self-awareness, motivation, use of emotion, and control of impulses. All of these play a significant role in shaping successful relationships and careers.
It can be difficult to develop certain facets of EQ without first developing others. For example, if you don’t understand why most people feel stressed when they’re under pressure, then you won’t know how to help them work through their issues.
On top of all this, research shows that having high levels of empathy — another component of EQ — correlates with higher job performance, workplace productivity, and lower employee turnover.
How to Improve Your Emotional Intelligence
One of the most important things you can do to improve your emotional intelligence is learn how to recognize, understand, and manage your emotions.
Many people try to suppress their emotions because they believe that suppressing them will make them disappear. This only makes the emotion stronger and more powerful in your body.
You want to be able to identify your feelings so you are not overwhelmed by them. Once you know what you're feeling, you can work on reducing or changing those feelings.
It's also important to acknowledge and accept your own limitations when it comes to managing certain emotions. No one has ever been completely trained in their own self-control, for example!
There are several different theories about why some people seem to have higher levels of emotional intelligence than others.
However, no matter what factors contribute to someone's EQ, practicing skills to increase yours is always a good thing.
Share your thoughts on emotional intelligence.
In our increasingly connected world, people are sharing more about themselves than ever before. With every new status update, like-post, or comment, we as readers get a sense of who this person is. We gain insights into their personality through their posts and comments.
In fact, it’s no surprise that some people have become so obsessed with telling everyone what they think and feel that they left their profile empty. Their need for attention gets in the way of developing emotional literacy.
Emotional literacy happens when you understand how emotions work and why someone might be experiencing them. You can learn something from a friend’s laugh line rant, but only if you recognize their laughter as a sign of happiness and not because they just got angry at you.
That said, there’s another reason why having friends with low levels of emotional literacy can be frustrating. They may unintentionally do things that hurt you or others.