What is emotional intelligence?
It is the ability that people have to recognize, understand and manage their own emotions, as well as those of the people around them. In this way, interpersonal relationships are facilitated, as well as achieving goals, managing stress and solving problems. In a nutshell, having emotional intelligence is being in tune with our own emotions and the impact they have on us and those around us, as well as the impact that the emotions of others have on us and the reactions ( empathy ) we show to friends. , family and/or colleagues when they show discontent, happiness, anger, boredom, sadness, etc.
Emotional intelligence is divided into intrapersonal, and interpersonal intelligence. The first refers to understanding our own emotions and how we react to them, and how we make decisions and regulate our emotions. The second refers to how we understand the emotions of others and how we act according to the state of mind that we perceive in others.
People who have worked on themselves to become aware of their emotional intelligence are said to know:
- better handle negative experiences;
- have a greater ability to identify emotions and know precisely what they are feeling exactly;
- identify the emotions of others ;
- establish relationships based on the understanding of the emotions of others (understanding how someone feels helps to establish a more open channel of communication);
- maintain good relations; based on the comprehensive compression of the others;
- influencing others; thanks to the understanding and respect for the emotions and points of view of the other;
- communicate your views clearly; Since there are understanding and respect for the other and their emotions, it is easier to communicate their own points of view effectively;
- manage conflicts; because the empathy they have developed allows them to be impartial and fair arbitrators;
- teamwork; knowing who each element of the group is and its strengths and weaknesses;
By better understanding emotions, those who have worked on their emotional intelligence are able to relate better to others, be more successful in their work, and lead more fulfilling lives. Thus, they often also have high social intelligence.
According to studies by psychologists Peter Savoley and John D. Mayer, there are four fundamental moments to develop emotional intelligence. Four factors are elaborated in his model:
- Perceiving emotions accurately; This means that you have to learn to read non-verbal emotions such as body language and/or facial expressions, as well as your own emotions (knowing what it feels like at each moment, the origin of the feeling and the conclusion of how that feeling affects behaviour and thinking).
- Use the reading of emotions to react to situations; Thus priority is given to what we perceive requires immediate attention, and what is perceived as the urgent minor is relegated to the background. Here it is of utmost importance to know how to control impulses, avoid emotional explosions, advocate calm when there is the difficulty, and adapt to changes and fluctuations from day to day.
- Understand emotions and give them the meaning they deserve; This means that a person who is upset at work is not necessarily upset with his job, but may have personal problems and does not know how to separate his private life from his work life.
- Manage emotions; it means that we must know how to respond and when to respond to our own emotions and those of others.
The importance of emotional intelligence
The most successful people in their lives are said to be those with the highest emotional intelligence, not necessarily those with the highest IQ. When emotions are not managed properly, they can wipe out a person’s work effort, as well as their private life. Those who have worked to develop this part of their understanding of the world and of themselves find that, in general, emotional intelligence:
- It helps to succeed in all those areas of life where you have to relate to others;
- It helps to choose the state of mind that best suits each situation and to work harmoniously with what each moment requires;
- It helps to relate to others and favours the maintenance of more satisfactory relationships;
- Helps maintain better health (managing stress, anxiety and depression );
- It helps maintain a more stable state of mind, without so many ups and downs.