Emotional Intelligence, 7 skills to improve your EQ

Posted by: Rose Tol, R&I Life Coaching, March 31, 2013 Emotional Intelligence in Life Coaching

Emotional Intelligence is the ability to perceive, use, understand and manage emotions in order to relate better to other people, form healthier relationships, achieve greater success at work and lead a more fulfilling life.

As human beings we experience and relate to feelings and emotions. The way we feel about people or things influences the way we think.

Emotions and feelings communicate information. Decoding and understanding this information and the way we decide to use it, shapes the experiences we have in our daily life.

Learn more about why emotional intelligence, EQ,  can impact your life and relationships greatly and how you can raise your EQ greatly by mastering these 7 skills.

What is Your Emotional Intelligence

Your EQ has four parts to it.

  1.  Awareness. Having awareness of your own emotions and those of others is the foundation for developing all of the skills for EQ. Can you recognize emotions in yourself and others and how they impact your or others behaviors?
  2. Expression. Expression is the ability to share and talk about what you are feeling. When done with awareness of the right person,the right timing and the right place, talking about your feelings can enhance trust, manage conflict, create change, enrich and inspire, enhance teamwork and give others a chance to support you and tend to your needs. You also understand the ways other people express their emotions, needs, and concerns.
  3. Ability to Reason. A person with a high levels of emotional reasoning has the ability to think before they act. They are able to bring reality and feelings together. They make decisions by combining facts and intuition. They will consider how others might react to their decisions. 
  4. Self-Management. Being able to manage and control your emotions gives you the ability to remain calm and equiposed under all circumstances. It gives you the ability to deal with stress and to respond to strong emotions in a constructive way. You will also be able to be objective and give your attention fully to others.

Why is Emotional Intelligence so Important?

If you have a high EQ you can recognize your own emotional state and the emotional states of others really well. This understanding of emotions can help you to communicate more effectively with others, relate better with people, create sustaining and lasting relationships, achieve greater success at work, and lead a more fulfilling life.

Society is starting to realize that it is not all about having a high IQ. In many circumstances, having a high EQ is valued over a high IQ. Research on Emotional Intelligence indicates that EQ is a key component to achieving exceptional performance in individuals and organizations.

If you are on the journey of self discovery, your emotions are a powerful way to understand yourself. You will learn to become detached from  your feelings and have an ability to listen for the messages that are encoded in the emotions. Life itself and God is speaking to us through our feelings. It takes an open mind and being still inside to be able to hear these whispers.

Increasing your awareness and understanding of others unlocks potential and improves effectiveness, relationships and leadership capability.

Your EQ is also a crucial part in achieving and maintaining your mental and physical health. If you are unable to manage your emotions, stress levels will rise and this can impact your health greatly.

How to Improve Your Emotional Intelligence

  1. Emotional Awareness. It is the ability to connect to your feelings and having moment-to-moment awareness of what you are feeling and how this is influencing your thoughts and behaviors. With this awareness you will be able to put feelings aside if the situation calls for that and attend to them later. Feelings are just feelings and there no good or bad feelings; they are just feelings. If feelings of pain and hurt come up, you are not afraid of them and give them your attention by feeling them so they can move and find healing if needed. In the highest level of awareness you understand that you are not your feelings. Feelings are just energy, flowing through your body  that often contain a message. You have the ability to use the energy of the emotion in a positive way.
  2. Ability to Be Calm and Still. Life is full of challenges and situations that can trigger us and create stress. It is important, for improving your EQ, to be able to know what your life stress triggers are, so you can recognize them and understand them for what they are and find a place of calm inside. Many times in order to find this place of calm inside we need to release the bulk of the emotions, enough so we can become calm and still. You need to learn how to release an emotion in a safe and effective way. 
  3. Ability to Be Open and Objective. To be open minded and to have the ability to remain objective has a great impact on your level of EQ. A narrow mind is usual a sign of a low EQ. Through inner reflection and a depth of understanding you will be able to deal with conflicts in a calm and clear manner. You will be open to consider others ideas and viewpoints in a way that expands your world and you will increase your ability to deeply feel others.
  4. Know Yourself. It is important to take time out of normal life and spend time contemplating and questioning yourself. Why do you do the things you do? Evaluate your relationships yourself and others. Recognize your strengths and weaknesses and build upon the strengths while working out how to either supplement or work around your limitations. What are your values? The more you know yourself the more you understand your emotions and how they effect your behavior, the more you will be able to control and manage them in a healthy way.
  5. Practice Communication Skills. Having good communication skills and listening skills results in a better EQ. Being able to communicate well and listen consciously helps you manage emotions of yourself and others. Good communication skills result in increasing care, respect and love even in the mitts of emotional turmoil. People with a high emotional intelligence have great awareness about non-verbal communications. The way you speak, dress, stand, facial expressions can greatly influence the presence of emotions, positive or negative.
  6. Have no Defense. When you have a high EQ you are comfortable with your feelings and comfortable with taking responsibility for your feelings and actions. There is no need to defend them. You are more likely to be honest and real, which is so appreciated in this world. This is a great quality that enhances the ability to resolve conflict positively.
  7. Connect with people. Being able to connect deeply with others, to have truly meaningful, truthful and real interactions is not an easy thing to do. Many people are cautious to open up, to connect, there is mistrust, skepticism, fear so many different walls are build up. It is your job to recognize these walls and respect them and find a way to connect anyways. People love it when they can feel safe and respected even if for a tiny moment they were able to let their wall be penetrated. Do not give up on anyone. We are all desperate for connection, to be seen, understood and most of all loved.

Emotional Intelligence is of course more then having skills and awareness. It is a way of being, connecting and contributing to the world.

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