Emotional Intelligence is often described as the ability of individuals to recognise their own and other people’s emotions, to discriminate between different feelings and categorise them appropriately to use emotional information to guide future thinking and behaviour influencing our success in life.
Generally speaking, emotional intelligence encompasses five basic areas of mastery. These include:
- Knowing your feelings and using them to make life decisions you can live with.
- Being able to manage your emotional life without being hijacked by it; not being paralyzed by depression or worry, or swept away by anger.
- Persisting in the face of setbacks and channeling your impulses in order to pursue your goals.
- Empathy, reading other people’s emotions without their having to tell you what they are feeling.
- Handling feelings in relationships with skill and harmony
The scope of these skills mean there is indeed room for all of us to learn, grow, and improve. There is a lot to learn here. Learning about emotional intelligence, learning about the tools for energy efficiency; is only the beginning. It’s like reading all the books on sailing and small boat sailing. You then have the theory mastered, but you have no hands-on practice. It’s only with practice that we gain mastery of anything. That’s true of our feelings and emotions too!
So where do you begin?
- Assessment tools are a great way to learn to identify your emotions. Some of these tools can be found here: MindTools, 6 Seconds and Maetrix.
- Energy efficiency tools are invaluable in helping you tap into inner wisdom and resources to manage your emotions and understand what the best choices are when you are making life decisions.
- Developing empathy is powerful in critical business situations like a sales call, a closing, your management style, etc. Using your energy efficiency tools will allow you to pay attention to your instincts in this area instead of second-guessing yourself.
- Once you learn to be the manager of your feelings, it becomes an easy habit to apply in any business or personal relationship.
Mastery of all the basics does not occur overnight. But with practice it comes very quickly – just like learning to ride a bicycle. Once you experience how it’s ‘supposed to work’, how energy efficiency is ‘supposed to feel’, it’s easier and easier to re-establish in a variety of circumstances. That’s where mastery is achieved. That’s when you and everyone in your business begin to see the results.