It’s something that has been the focus of so many studies, research and even the educational videos you find on loop on Facebook or Youtube.
When psychologists and experts began using this term, it was the missing piece that explained why people with high IQ wouldn’t necessarily succeed.
In fact, it was found that people with average IQs outperform those with high IQs 80% of time in the workplace.
Since its discovery, and more importantly, the discovery of how vital it is, we’ve been trying to learn more and more about it. Yet we’re still somewhat behind in fully encapsulating the full field.
After all, how can we fully understand emotional intelligence when we haven’t yet fully understood our emotions.
What is it exactly?
Emotional Intelligence is divided into two areas with four compartments.
The most important component of them all. It’s not only the foundational concept in personal competence, but in all emotional intelligence.
Self-awareness is the ability to accurately scope out the various array of emotions and feelings going on in you.
A lot of times we don’t know what’s happening with us emotionally, being self-aware though means you can gauge yourself and you know what you feel when you feel it.
It sounds simple, but it’s far from it.
It acts as the foundation of emotional intelligence because it serves the purpose of being your number one tool in anything relating to understanding and dealing with emotions.
It’s the natural transition of having the power of being on top of your emotions. You can manage yourself, literally. Your feelings would rarely get the better of you, and you would always seem calm in tense situations.
Being able to self-manage is paramount in any vital position for instance. Being able to handle stress means you recognized the feeling of anxiety, were aware of its consequences and then were able to break it down to be able to focus and work without disruption.
Like self-awareness, it is a foundational concept which is relied upon for the overall success of social competence. In an also similar manner to self-awareness, it’s about understanding, recognizing or describing feelings or emotions, just not your own but those of others.
It means you can pick up on the slightest clues or hints, you can learn people’s behavioral patterns and can see right through their actions. It’s not mind reading, but it’s an intuitive skill that you get better at the more you spend time with a person.
It’s almost invaluable. Whether in the workplace, between friends, or in your relationship, it could be the difference between the success or failure of those relationships because if you can’t understand people around you, especially if they’re not clear about how they feel, then you can’t treat them in the correct way or deal with the situations that arise properly.
The culmination of all these previous skills and concepts put together. When you’re self-aware, you can understand your emotions and analyze yourself accurately. Then you manage these emotions based on what you’ve analyzed and can therefore act correctly based on the data you’ve produced about yourself.
Then you move on to others. Learning to be aware of others and understanding their emotions means you can perceive their different moods and therefore handle relationships wisely.
The main challenge is indeed practicing these concepts. It requires heavy analysis of your own thoughts and being focused on your day-to-day dealings. Your body is hardwired to receive the information coming from your emotions first, then it reaches the rational part of the brain where you can break down any incoherent ideas or silly feelings.
This means you need to be calm and be able to restrain yourself from reacting immediately to any stimulus that might cause an action from you without you thinking about it first. It requires lots of practice and discipline.
Your cells can grow branches. Little neuron connections that can grow the more you practice, much like any muscle you work out.
For instance, if someone says something that might anger you, your normal reaction would be quick and potentially aggressive or angry as well. If, however you took just a few moments to let your brain try and break down the anger, you can start calming yourself and pushing yourself to analyze the situation slowly and therefore react in a more collected manner that would be more advantageous to you.
The more you do, the more your cells become prepared to do it, meaning you will need less time to react in the right way every time. This is actual scientific evidence that you can literally alter your behavior on a physiological level to be able to change your personality.
EQ is changeable, unlike IQ. You can better wiser, calmer and more adept to any situation involving a group of people.
This will reflect in every major and minor part of your life. You can transform your relationships at home, you can advance at work, and you can formulate new relationships all while growing and learning more about yourself and others.
Emotional Intelligence is still a vast and wise field where scientists will surely discover more to teach us. In the meantime, there is no investment more crucial or profitable to you or those around you. You are literally your own most valuable asset. Invest in yourself, your personality, and you will advance in the workplace, in your social life, and in your home all while learning and growing, literally!