It’s been said that your talent, experience and I.Q. might get you into a job, but if you want to do well, you need more than that. In his 1996 book, Emotional Intelligence, Dr. Daniel Goleman explained the “more than that” had to do with being self-aware, managing your emotions, having empathy for others, and having the ability to connect with and influence others. The truth is, no matter how good you are, school is never out when it comes to emotional intelligence. Here are three ways to tap into yours:
Don’t be overconfident
The more we hear from others how well we do with our communication, relationships and in leading ourselves, the easier it is to get complacent. Ask friends, family, and co-workers to give it to you straight. “What are my blind-spots” when it comes to my emotional intelligence? Do people love to be around me because of my high energy but sometimes wish I wouldn’t talk so much? We all have blind-spots but few people seek to find out what they are. Do that and your E.Q. will rise.
Make journaling a habit
A large part of emotional intelligence is knowing yourself. Everybody thinks they do and that’s a mistake for most of us. Journal every day or once a week, whatever works for you, but journal. You’ll be surprised what you learn about yourself, your emotions, your concerns, how you respond to adversity, how you respond to good fortune, and so on. Journaling will uncover aspects of yourself you’re not aware of and that will raise your emotional intelligence.
How emotionally intelligent are we if we stay in our comfort zones? I find it easier to get along with my close friends than with those whom I don’t naturally click with. That’s understandable. But if I want to grow my E.Q., I need someone who isn’t so easy for me to listen to, work with, or collaborate with. We could all benefit from challenging ourselves to find ways to grow our emotional intelligence.