• The Positive Professional

How Does Higher Emotional Intelligence Help You Live Better?

How Does Higher Emotional Intelligence Help You Live Better? You may have heard the term "emotional intelligence." What is it? Do you have it? How can you get some emotional intelligence if you need it? Emotional intelligence might be a more sophisticated and measurable way to describe maturity. When we first come into the world, we're entirely ruled by impulse. We feel something, and we react - we cry. We learn that crying helps us get what we need - food, love, comfort. As we grow, we learn to communicate in non-verbal gestures and expressions; and then later, in words. By the time we're 2 or 3 years old, we have a sense of expressing our feelings - laughing, crying, smiling, and using simple words like "happy," "sad," "angry" etc. to convey how we feel at the time. This is the very first lesson in emotional awareness and self-expression. However, at this early phase of development, children have very little control over the emotional impulses that wash over them and cause them to act and react in various ways. You might say that children have a very low emotional intelligence which basically means they aren't good at controlling themselves. But of course, this is to be expected, and it's something that most humans seek to improve throughout their lifelong personal development. With age and life experience, people generally develop a higher emotional intelligence, also known as maturity and later maybe even wisdom. The level of emotional intelligence can vary from person to person and from one situation to the next. Someone who keeps their cool at the office may have trouble controlling their emotional reactions to family members. Two members of the same family may emotionally express themselves in very different ways. Your emotional intelligence has a significant impact on the quality of the life you lead. People with low emotional intelligence tend to struggle more in a variety of areas, including intimate relationships, work, and social situations. Those who have managed to increase their emotional intelligence find that professional and personal success and happiness are within closer reach. So how does one grow, mature, and become wise, thus gaining emotional intelligence? First, by becoming aware of emotions - both our own and the emotions of other people. Having a sense of emotions takes us deeper into the realm of human connection. We feel, or at least we imagine that we can feel other people's feelings. This is called empathy, and it helps us relate better and experience a sense of closeness with others. We also gain insights into our own needs as a result of exploring our own emotions and comparing our experiences with those of others. Through these two extremes of emotional awareness - self-awareness and other-awareness - we are able to strike a balance between self and other. This is important because all humans experience fulfillment in connecting with other people, just as much as they do in having their own needs met. Developing your emotional intelligence can help you improve in the following areas: Stops you from acting on impulse. When we let our emotional impulses run wild and rule our actions, we often find ourselves in trouble. Think of a time when you were inadvertently offended by something someone said. A quick, angry retort might get the other person riled up as well. Now you have an argument breaking out, with potential for a strained or even failed relationship. It helps you communicate better. Let's continue with the prior example - being offended by someone's remark. The ability to control one's reaction could find you taking time to think over what happened. You give pause to the situation, allowing yourself to calm down. Then you consider the facts, and politely ask the other to clarify or explain their point of view. You might discover that the person didn't mean to hurt your feelings - their words came out wrong. Focusing on the positive in your communication can help bring you closer in your understanding of, empathy for, and respect of other people. Connects you more deeply with others. Emotional intelligence is based on empathy - the ability to walk in another person's shoes, so to speak. Approaching the above miscommunication with empathy - maybe you find out that the person who said something hurtful was under a lot of stress that day. Her mother is in the hospital and her child is having problems at school. Through empathy, you are able to gain a sense of where she's coming from and feel closer to her despite the misunderstanding. What are some other ways that high emotional intelligence can be beneficial? High emotional intelligence goes beyond one-on-one communication and into the daily functions and responsibilities of life. Someone who has a good handle on their emotions and a strong mastery of other people's emotions can live more richly in the following ways: They're less likely to get stuck in a negative headspace. This is important because there are only so many hours in a day. If you spend a good portion of those hours struggling to manage your emotions, there isn't much time left over to accomplish what you want and enjoy the things you love to do the most. For example, suppose you messed up something you were trying to accomplish. A person with high emotional intelligence might recognize the feeling of frustration and disappointment with oneself. But in doing so, they are able to move past the emotions by acknowledging them and then assessing what they need to do next if they want to be successful. They're more likely to be placed in a position of leadership. People who have high emotional intelligence can navigate through conflict. They motivate teams to greater output; teach, train, and manage people in a way that makes them feel appreciated, supported, and recognized. Underlings who feel heard and honored for their unique contributions tend to be better performers. They are more willing to take on increased responsibility and as a result experience a higher level of satisfaction with their careers. Better at solving problems. This goes along with being stuck in a negative frame of mind. Each day, we're faced with a set of challenges to overcome. These can be small challenges, like trying to locate a pair of matching socks to wear to work. Or they can be bigger challenges, like getting a busload of children home safely in a sudden snowstorm. And then there can be long-term challenges, like how to save money to buy a home when you aren't currently meeting your household expenses. Emotions come into play by being patient with oneself to find that missing article of clothing - keeping your cool during a tense driving scenario - and avoiding self-blame over your financial situation so you can move forward toward a smarter savings plan. Better at decision making. People who come up short in the area of emotional intelligence may tend to unnecessarily beat themselves up over bad choices. Or, they may spend too much time stuck in indecision because they let emotions like fear and worry get the best of them. But once we get a handle on our emotions and gain more insight into the emotions of other people, the better we become at decision making. The more quickly and more efficiently we're able to reach smart conclusions that help us forward our own goals, the less time we'll spend having to hit the proverbial rewind and redo buttons on our life situations. Improves the quality of relationships. In our youth, we may struggle with relationships. Young people look to their peers for affirmation of their worth. They may seek approval for things like how they dress and talk as well as the things they like to do. There may be social pressure and bullying, both of which are forms of manipulation deeply rooted in human emotion. People with less developed emotional intelligence may continue these types of more surface relationships into their adult years. But those who learn to manage emotions more effectively are able to move past the superficial and on to more meaningful and mature connections - which are ultimately more emotionally satisfying. Less stress, more enjoyment. Overall, having a higher emotional intelligence has to do with becoming aware of the emotions of oneself and others, and striking a balance between those two extremes for stronger relationships all around. Higher emotional intelligence means increased confidence and the ability to take decisive action in your life. Better problem-solving skills and the ability to lead others also means greater satisfaction - a life well-lived. And this ultimately means far less stress and far more enjoyment. We get to spend less time struggling and more time producing, striving toward goals, moving in a direction we want to go in, living in support of our values, and sharing our best moments with people whom we feel a deep emotional connection. Written by

Tracyavon Source https://psychcentral.com/lib/what-is-emotional-intelligence-eq/ Follow me on Twitter @PositivePodcas2

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