Emotional Intelligence


“Emotional Intelligence refers to the capacity for recognising our own feelings, and those of others, for motivating ourselves and for managing emotions in ourselves and our relationships’.

“EQ, or Emotional Quotient, is how one measures Emotional Intelligence.’ – Daniel Goleman (1998)

Managing emotion has captured the attention of management theorists, psychologists and even neuroscientists.

For decades the focus was on intelligence quotient (IQ) when recruiting in the workplace. Studies show that a high IQ is no longer considered as important in determining an individual’s contribution to the workplace, EQ is considered far more significant. The relationships we build and manage effectively impact on personal and business success.

Being emotionally intelligent means better management of relationships, communication, conflict resolution, confident leadership and bringing out the best in people.

Think of the people around you that you consider effective leaders. The characteristics used to describe them often are:

• They listen to others;

• They have empathy;

• They are confident in their abilities;

• They remain calm under pressure; and

• They don’t let their emotions get the better of them.

These people are said to have high emotional intelligence.

EQ focus areas:

Self awareness – knowing yourself well, acknowledging your strengths and areas for improvement. Knowing how you feel at all times and how your emotions impact on those around you.

Self management – managing your emotions and being accountable for your actions. Self regulation means that you don’t make impulsive decisions based on your emotions.

Understanding other people’s emotions – the ability to have empathy, to be able to relate to others.

Social intelligence – managing relations, managing others’ emotions and being flexible enough to meet individual requirements.

Here are some ways to improve your emotional intelligence:

Become aware of your reactions to situations and people. Journaling is effective in documenting your behaviour and noticing your patterns of behaviour. Be honest with yourself and don’t blame others.

Take responsibility for your actions – if you have hurt someone apologise and take corrective action.

Know your triggers and what causes you to get angry so that you can better manage them.

What makes you happy and feel good? Make use of this when you are feeling down or negative.

Before you act, examine how your actions will impact others. Have empathy, put yourself in their place. How will they feel if you do this? Would you want that experience?

How are your actions and behaviour serving you, what reaction and consequences do they have?

Ask people for feedback – gathering feedback from people is a sign of confidence. We are not fully aware of how others perceive our behaviour, we may think we handle situation well, while others may not.

It was Albert Einstein who said insanity is when you do what you did yesterday and expect different results today…

Email me at: Mariam@awakeningexcellence.co.za for coaching and business support. “Live your best life now.’


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