You’ve got the brain power…that’s great!!! But what about emotional intelligence?
We all know people at work or in our personal lives who are great at listening. They are always helping others feel more hopeful and optimistic. You admire the way that they are able to control their emotions. You secretly wish you had the ability to control your emotions too.
Emotional intelligence is being talked about more and more in the workplace. But why? Probably because employers have figured out that it takes more than knowing how to do your job to be successful at work. Being able to manage your emotions is important too.
Defining Emotional Intelligence (EI)
Simply put, emotional intelligence is the ability to recognize your emotions and how they make you feel. You then take into account how your emotions affect the people around you. In the workplace, emotional intelligence helps you manage your moods and your reactions to actions of others. Mastering your emotional intelligence makes you a more effective and productive employee.
Now we all get “into our feelings” sometimes while we are at work. Feelings are great! You are supposed to have feelings. You’re human!!! But how are you managing your emotions while at work? Do you tend to be passive aggressive when you get annoyed? Do you lash out? Do you secretly plot to destroy your offender? Or do you just swallow your pride and allow others to take advantage of you? How you react in emotional situations can make all the difference in your career and daily work life.
So, what can you do to manage your feelings so that the real YOU can shine through?
Improving your Emotional Intelligence
Here are 6 things you need to make a part of your life if you want to improve your emotional intelligence:
1. Know What Causes You Stress
Are you overwhelmed by your workload? Do you have a sick child at home? Did you argue with a friend, loved one or co-worker? Whatever the cause, identifying your stress triggers will put you on the right path to managing them. Once you know what is causing your stress, recognize that you hold the power to calm yourself down.
Try exercising or meditation to bring you back down when your stress levels are running high. The one thing that you absolutely CANNOT do is take your stress out on others.
2. Develop Empathy
Empathy is essential to raising your emotional intelligence. Empathy is an important emotion to have. By showing someone that you understand where they’re coming from, you’re able to gain their respect. You know you are becoming more empathetic when you’re able to recognize the feelings of others.
3. Choose the Right Kind of Work
When you know what you like to do and what you are passionate about, you will be more motivated to go to work. You will have fewer doubts about your goals and abilities to reach them. People who develop higher emotional intelligence tend to have a more balanced life all the way around.
Sometimes we have to take jobs that we don’t necessarily want just to make a living. You still have to find something that you can at least tolerate. If you don’t like working with people, don’t take a job where you have to interact with the public every day. It won’t last anyway.
4. Maintain Self-Control
Learn to be aware of your own emotions and how you respond to different situations. Be honest with yourself. Determine your strengths and weaknesses, and how they might affect others. Work to take responsibility for all of your actions. Be open-minded, and stay positive.
5. Read People’s Body Language
Often people say one thing, but the look on their face says something totally different. Learn to read between the lines. Learn to read people! This will allow you to pick up on people’s true feelings. Pay attention to the subtle ways that people communicate their emotions.
6. Observe the effect you have on others
Do you tend to make others feel nervous, cheerful or angry? What happens to the conversation when you walk into the room? Understanding other people’s feelings is only half the battle. You also need to understand how you make others feel.
Tapping into your emotional intelligence takes time and patience. A lot of times, it comes with experience. Especially in the workplace. Some people are just born with certain qualities. Some people develop their emotional intelligence through life experiences. Either way, knowing what it is and making it work for you could be the push your career needs.
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