More often, personality traits are genetically transferred to us from our parents, or from our ancestors. As per Daniel Goleman’s study, he said that we are already born with the qualities our parents have and it develops as we grow older (Emotional Intelligence: Why it can matter more than the IQ, 1995). Like how we handle physical pain when we are learning to walk, or simply when we cry when we are hungry or hurt. We already know that something is scary, and we ran towards our mother or anyone we knew or familiar with. So what is a true emotional intelligence?
Though other writers opposed this, we know that our knowledge widens as we go through good and bad experiences. We already know what to do when a certain situation repeats itself. That even sometimes we repeatedly do the same action to the same situation, we are still smart to find ways to solve the problem. Emotional intelligence is not being a perfect person who can resolve and understand everything. Emotional intelligence is being aware of your self, of others, and the emotions that we have.
Having a high level of EQ doesn’t mean you’re not allowed to get angry; It is about being honest and straightforward
You might already think of someone who is very nice. That someone everybody likes. That someone who can always say yes to anyone or anything you ask. That someone who can take all the negative treatments like it’s nothing and still smiles back at you. That one who can everybody leans on, go for a piece of advice, or ask for help may it be financial or moral support. Most often, these people are targets for taking advantage, bullying, harassment, or alike.
Be kind to yourself and offer only what you can give. It’s okay to say ‘no’ when you can’t. You must only share your extras. Imagine yourself having a hundred-peso bill as your allowance in a day. You only spend 50 pesos for food because you are walking to and from work. And then someone asks for a hundred pesos from you. What are you going to do? Are you going to be that one who will give it all and suffer later? Or, are you going to be the one who will give just a half or a small part of it, and you’ll both survive later? Think about it.
Be a concerned honest person. It’s okay to give negative feedback to someone. Say it with sincerity that you are concerned and wanted to help. Because if you always tell your friends that everything she does is right, she will always think that she’s right. You are not being a friend at all. You are being a follower. There must be no masters in friendship. Yes, it’s bad to interfere with other’s business. But you have the right to give your opinion when you are asked to. You can influence how they will decide, but don’t decide for them. Give them options. How they will handle it is up to them.
High EQ is not equivalent to being touchy-feely; It is about being aware of your emotions and emotions of others
We don’t need to tell everything to other people to make them understand us. Imagine someone who is overly sensitive over a flower showed in a class, or a short poem shared to everyone. Someone started to explain exaggeratedly how he felt after hearing it that he almost die. Are you touched or annoyed? Are you going to be like one?
Knowing that you felt sad when you heard the poem is a good sign. Try to listen to others as well and be empathetic. You will realize that everyone has its own perspective based on their experiences. Some laughed because it’s funny for them or some are confused because the words are too deep. Don’t mind how they explain their feelings. The important part is you can label the feelings they’ve felt.
Being emotionally intelligent doesn’t mean it’s being emotional; It is about being smart with your emotions
Being aware of your emotions and how to handle them is another true part of emotional intelligence. It’s not about heightening or ceasing your emotions, but to balance them. There is a space for letting your emotions show, and then another space to think of what you need to do about it. That’s it!
How to be an emotionally intelligent person
- Distinguish between thoughts and feelings
- Use your feelings to help guide decision-making
- Take more responsibility for your feelings
- Show respect for and validate other people’s feelings
- Show you care and build trust by showing sincerity and honesty
- Listen twice as much as you speak
- Feel energized, not angry
- Use your energy and enthusiasm to motivate others
TIP: Before you let your anger burst, ask yourself these three questions first:
- Do I need to say or do it?
- Do I need to say or do it now?
- Does it need to be said or done by me?
Before you know it, your anger has passed. 🙂
Source: Emotional Intelligence In the Workplace, Kristine Nelson Fuge (2014)