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Being aware of, developing and looking after your emotional intelligence will help build your resilience, and help you to succeed.

It will help you

  • Build your self-awareness
  • Regulate your emotional and thinking responses to things
  • Mange your relationships well

Emotional Intelligence is the ability to recognise and manage emotions, in yourself and other people

Daniel Goleman is the ‘father’ of the emotional intelligence concept. He identified these five key elements that you can practice to develop your emotional intelligence:

  • Self-awareness
  • Self-regulation
  • Motivation
  • Empathy
  • Social skills

Self-awareness

Practice noticing and naming your emotions –articulate them as ‘I feel…’

Don’t deny them, or let other people deny how you feel.

We have the right to experience and feel our emotions:

‘Strong feelings do not disappear when banished’ (Haim Ginott)

‘Feelings are information, not symptoms’ (Whitworth et al.)

Self -regulation

AND we have a responsibility to understand our emotions and to manage them.

So practise making conscious decisions about what to do in response (not in reaction) to your emotions, and manage them.

Keep your values in mind.

Remember too that we are NOT responsible for others’ emotions.

Motivation

  • Know your values and take them into account in your actions and decisions (e.g. thinking through the temptation to take a promotion that doesn’t align with your values)
  • Know your strengths and weaknesses
  • Consciously choose whether to work within your strengths or stretch yourself
  • Set and work towards goals that match your values, that are yours, and that are realistic

Empathy and Social skills

  • Allow space and time (i.e. mutual respect) for others
  • Practice active listening
  • Be alert to their feelings and respond to / validate them
  • Pay attention to body language
  • Practice clear communication

Links for further information

Daniel Goleman on Emotional Intelligence

Wikipedia entry on Emotional Intelligence

Mindtools: Emotional Intelligence in Leadership

 

Alison Trinder December 2020