COVID-19 continues to put us all to the test even as the country begins to stagger their re-opening phases. We are excited to re-open in order to stimulate the economy and move toward more socialization while at the same time remaining cautious, aware that the novel coronavirus is still a threat without a vaccine.
Along with corona, society has been tested. Given the tragic incidents and given the recent protests around the world, we stand together in solidarity to end racism. We are moving toward a better, kinder and more compassionate world.
Why is Emotional Intelligence (EI or EQ) so important? Because it is the ability to understand and manage one’s own emotions. Yes, emotions do count. And, it is the collective emotional intelligence that will bring us to that kinder place.
Your EQ is as important as your IQ if not more so. The so-called ‘soft skills’ or ‘people skills’ associated with emotional intelligence are crucial when it comes to living a fulfilling and successful life. Emotional Intelligence consists of factors that make up a different way of being smart according to Daniel Goleman who wrote the groundbreaking book Emotional Intelligence.
There are 5 factors that make up Emotional Intelligence: self-assessment; self-management, motivation, empathy and social skills.
- Self-assessment is about understanding yourself thoroughly. It is the ability to identify your weaknesses, strengths, values, drivers, your intuitiveness as well as your impact on other people.
- Self-management is having the capability to control your impulses and moods. It is the ability to regulate your emotions so that when in crisis you can respond and not react.
- Motivation encompasses optimism, persistence and passion. It is the ability to enjoy achievement for its own sake.
- Empathy is the ability ‘to walk in another person’s shoes’. That is the ability to understand other people’s emotional makeup. It is about considering the feelings of others when in communication or in a decision-making process.
- Social skills are key factors when interacting or communicating with others. Social skills help you build interpersonal and meaningful relationships. These skills include eye contact, active listening skills, clear communication etc.
What to Do? Set the intention to improve your Emotional Intelligence and commit to it. Just as you commit to your exercise program, your gardening days, your music practice, your winemaking – set time aside daily to improve your EQ. Start with small allotments of time: 5 – 10 minutes per day for self-assessment. Here are some quick tips: Identify your emotions and how you are feeling. Take a deep breath before you pick up the phone or answer a question so that you respond intelligently rather than react inappropriately. Seek first to understand when you are in conversation with another. Be mindful of building your EQ, awareness of wanting to do so is a major step forward.
Reach out for help with a Registered Clinical Counsellor. In a secure and confidential setting, you will be able to get the help you need to build your EQ. Although we are slowly opening offices, private telephone sessions or secure online video sessions are still the norm. Feel free to get in touch with me for professional help.