Updated: May 24, 2021
“Emotional intelligence is about suppressing our emotions, especially at work”. A common misconception about EI that we hear from many people around us. It’s not having the best poker face, or hiding your emotions, thinking that this will make you look more “professional”.
It’s not faking your body language to trick others to think that you are emotionally “stable”. And it’s definitely not about giving wrong signals to the person or people on the other side of the conversation.
Recently, we are hearing this term a lot in the business world. It even took over the old IQ (Intelligence Quotient), which was commonly used to measure success of individuals. EI and EQ (emotional quetient which is the level of a person's EI) are now a focus in the recruitment game, where you might be asked about it interviews through behavioral questions. Or during your performance review session.
So what is emotional intelligence really?
EI is knowing, recognizing, empathizing, and connecting. Knowing how you feel in a certain situations. Understanding your strengths and areas of improvement, and developing your self from there.
Recognizing your state of mind and facing it, rather than hiding it. This will give you more control over the situation you are in. it will help you in fast decision making.
Empathizing to understand the other person’s emotions, and why they reacted in a certain way. So we don’t take things personal, and understand others by matching our emotional level. This doesn’t mean that if someone for example is in a raging and aggressive state, to meet them at that state, but to try to understand what they are feeling and why, then try to raise them to a higher and more positive emotional level.
Try practicing your active listening.Connecting, which comes after Knowing, Recognizing and Empathizing, will help you build a strong link with the person facing you. Which in turn can build a strong relationship, whether professionally or personally, so you can reach better outcome from this new relationship.
By now, we should know that Emotional Intelligence is something that we need to work on, improve and develop. It doesn’t only affect our professional life, but our personal day to day life and manage our stress levels. It helps us take better decisions, understand others and connect with them. It will ease our everyday conflicts and reflect a solution driven mind on the people we interact with.
Invest some time and effort in EI, and you will get your quick wins.