When someone is referred to as intelligent, the first thing that comes to mind is that of logical/critical thinking. But when you are out of the classroom or office, the need for intelligence is still required. Unfortunately, some parents concentrate on developing the intelligence level needed in the classroom to the neglect of emotional intelligence.
One would ask, what is there to be intelligent about your emotions? Some may not think it is equally important to train someone to cultivate emotional intelligence but we meet more people on the streets than we do in our offices or classrooms and how we comport ourselves with others will create a more lasting impression than our academic prowess.
What does it mean to be emotionally intelligent? According to Psychology Today, it is the ability to identify and manage your own emotions and the emotions of others. Being emotionally intelligent saves you from embarrassing yourself in intense situations and having to apologize later. We will be provoked by others no matter how much we put them at an arm’s length. There is little that we can do about it. However, how we respond to it is under our control. We are not born with it, we cultivate it as a habit and with time, you will find yourself in total control of your emotions no matter the situation.
Four ways to develop your emotional intelligence include;
Pause before you react.
More than once, you may have been tempted to respond in equal measure to someone’s irritating comment or attitude. On certain occasions, you might have restrained yourself; other times, you just couldn’t control yourself and fireworks sparked. How did you feel afterwards? Did you wish you had left the scene and calmed down before reacting? Heightened emotions have a way of blurring our sense of judgment and might cause us to behave in ways contrary to our usual selves. It is always better to give yourself a pause before reacting immediately.
See every difficult situation as a challenge.
We all get bad breaks from time to time. A positive mindset can translate an obstacle to a stepping stone instead of a setback. Instead of resigning yourself to depression and pity talk, you can assess the situation from a position of strength and not of weakness. See it as an opportunity to get better at what you do and give it your best shot.
Sometimes, we tend to put only our feelings in consideration and ignore what others might be going through. Being self-centered could end up hurting others so it takes a mature person to put himself in the shoes of the third party before making a comment or taking a decision. Some jobs like customer service-related ones require persons who are high in emotional intelligence to sympathize with agitated clients even when they are shouting at them.
To be able to live at peace with yourself and others, you should make developing emotional intelligence a priority. Do it for yourself and the people around you will benefit from it as well.