In the last post I described the idea of emotional intelligence vs. IQ and the benefits the former in working today. Obviously, it goes beyond the work place into all areas of our lives; including external relationships and intrinsic thought processes. This is a tough subject for a lot of us to address, but let’s talk about feelings!
One of the keys to being emotionally intelligent is being emotionally aware. We are usually feeling some sort of emotion but are completely unaware of it and why it is happening. It’s taken for granted. Emotional intelligence is often visceral to a persona, IE some people have an uncanny ability to adapt themselves to their social environment and become renowned and effective within it. They simply have it ingrained in their being to develop relationships. Others (such as myself) are not nearly so gifted and must learn to work within the parameters through developing their skill sets and abilities as such.
The first step is to recognize the range of emotions that you go through. The right side of your brain is quicker to react than the left side. If it were the other way around, we wouldn’t make social gaffes or hasty decisions based upon our emotions. That may sound ideal, but the actuality of the situation is that this quick reaction keeps us safe. It tells us when to fight and when to flee on instinct. Maintaining our mongoose like agility in terms of danger is important to us as a species. I love the mongoose.
Yet, our emotional reactions often cause us to do damage to relationships. It’s easy to react angrily to a perceived slight in the work place or blow up after internalizing anger for long periods of time. Who hasn’t? But by being aware of the fact that you are angry, sad, fearful, elated, hopeful or any other of the wide range of emotions can help to curb those decisions that may prove a detriment.
It sounds rather obvious and easy. I find quite the opposite. Our ego and pride often intercede our judgment and common sense, blurring our ability to be cognizant of emotions. I won’t lie, it’s a constant struggle for me to recognize and rationalize emotions. It must be made a practice and continually worked at until it becomes refined and a pattern of your internal process. And I’m just starting now, but I can see if worked at consistently, it will provide a much improved disposition in many situations where I’d previously lose my cool (which is a big deal seeing as my reservoir is rather shallow).
There are some other things to be noted. More to come.