Emotional intelligence (also known as EQ) can be defined as the ability to recognize, understand and manage our emotions, and to recognize how our emotions are impacting others, positively and negatively.
No wonder then that people with a higher EQ have a typical track of sound mental health. They can effectively manage their emotions under crisis or pressure and are less likely to take kneejerk, emotional decisions and actions.
Psyschologist Daniel Goleman who brought the concept of EQ into the mainstream, suggested that EQ is not innate. It’s learned through practice and can be developed, but mastering it requires attention, self-direction and commitment. When successful, the benefits and rewards become obvious in our relationships, careers and mental health.
How to boost your emotional intelligence-
Here are a few tested micro skills that can increase one’s EQ-
# Never take emotional decisions – Operating through our emotions can impact our daily decision making and we can end up taking decisions which are not healthy for us in the long run even though they may seem sane at that point. Avoid taking a decision when you are emotionally overwhelmed.
#Practice mindfulness- Being aware of how you behave is a powerful step. We all need to feel valued by ourselves & others, but this can also lead to being overtly focused on our own needs to the extent that we become self obsessed. Learn to focus instead on other people’s needs and practice empathy and compassion. This will benefit others, and will enhance your sense of value as well.
#Read other’s body language– Non –verbal cues are very strong indicators of what a person is saying or implying without the use of words. Movements, gestures, facial expressions and even shifts in our whole bodies indicate what’s going on inside us and by becoming aware of this body language and understanding what it might mean, you can learn to read people more easily. This puts you in a better position to communicate effectively with them .It can help you adjust your responses and behavior which can help you build long, trusting relationships.
# Take 10 to respond– It’s amazing how a few minutes of processing when you are feeling overwhelmed can help you remain grounded and in control and not taking any inadvertent action that the situation might trigger. So when you’re feeling emotionally charged, before you fire off what you think you want to say, stop, pause and break away to regain your composure by taking 10 minutes to write out what you want to say. Then read it out loud to yourself and ask how you would take it if you were receiving this message. By filtering out emotions from our key messages we increase our ability to have successful outcomes.
When do you know you are job-ready
Whether it’s your first summer job, an internship, or your first professional job, having a good resume is not enough to help you get a job of your taste and caliber.
In a country of over a billion people, shrinking jobs and swelling population of educated, unemployed youth (unemployment rate in India has shot up to a five-year high of 5 per cent in 2015-16, with the figure significantly higher at 8.7 per cent for women as compared to 4.3 per cent for men, according to a report by Labour Bureau) standing out from the crowd becomes crucial.
But standing out requires more than experience, sheer talent, hard work or good looks- it requires good personality; outstanding presentation; charm; grace; networking skills; making a lasting impression on others. And what will give you an extra edge are your confidence, your attitude, how you handle yourself, your poise and all this depends largely on your EQ.
John J.Bailey, a veteran public-relations professional, former agency owner & author of – The Power of ownership: How to build a career and a business says in his book: “How you look, which includes your grooming and what you wear plus how you present yourself are very important to getting and/or keeping a job or in landing a new piece of business.”
His book further stresses the importance of appearance and presentation-
“Make sure your clothes are clean and look great and your shoes–men and women–are shined, etc.
Wearing too much aftershave or perfume can be a huge turn-off in office situations. So use these moderately.
I have always said that listening is the key to good communication, so listen before speaking. And don’t dominate any situation. Make sure everyone is participating in any conversation. Ask questions to get others involved if they are reluctant. Remember that when you are talking, you are not learning anything.
Keeping in shape for you means just that. No one expects everyone to be a triathlete or marathon runner. However, being in good shape and looking that way just might mean to the other person that you have the energy to do the job.
If you are presenting, rehearse. Know what you want to say and say it. Speak with a polite voice and with confidence. This will most likely help you create a great first impression.
So, in summary, dress appropriately, stay in shape, and listen before you speak. And, have fun.”
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