As kids, we might all have given some kind of tests, with Intelligent Quotient (IQ) tests being the most common among them. There is something more to humans than being defined by just a mere IQ numerical value.
It is our instincts, it is in our empathy, compassion and understanding that separates us from the rest. These essential human factors are something which are not adequately represented by the IQ levels of a person. For taking into account these factors, Emotional Quotient (EQ) or Emotional Intelligence (EI) comes into the picture.
The act of perceiving, understanding, using and managing of one’s emotions and the ability with which these could be achieved are what define one’s Emotional Quotient. It is very easy to neglect one’s Emotional Quotient and is often discarded by many. We are all made up of feelings and emotions inside of us and no matter how much one might decline, many of our thoughts and actions are governed by these very emotions.
What is Emotional Quotient and Why it matters?
While people care the most about their Intelligent Quotient (IQ) levels, lest we forget about Emotional Quotient (EQ) that separates our unique abilities from the rest.
While IQ primarily deals with the learning abilities of a person, EQ determines how well we understand ourselves and the people around us.
EQ has been described as, “The ability to perceive emotion, integrate emotion to facilitate thought, understand emotions and to regulate emotions to promote personal growth.”
While a good IQ is a great indicator of a person’s skills and abilities, EQ is often touted as the essential ability to succeed in a workplace environment and leadership roles in particular.
IQ might be a good indicator to measure a person’s ability and knowledge, but
It is that skill which helps us empathize, understand and negotiate better. Working co-operatively has become the norm in the modern day and it is a higher EQ level that would help you succeed in such environments.
Getting along with people in a good way is often expected of good employees or leaders. Understanding people and what motivates them in a better way is what differentiates good leaders from the rest and this ability is often credited to a higher EQ levels.
How to develop & boost your Emotional Quotient
Unlike IQ, EQ rather increases with age, given the fact that people mature over time. While Emotional Quotient is mostly governed by childhood surroundings in which one grows, genetics, and other such factors, it is something which can be definitely worked upon. Here are 7 Tips to help you increase your Emotional Quotient.
Learn to accept Constructive Criticism
- In general, we hate when our thoughts or ideas are discarded by people judging them. Don’t you?
- In general, we are not good judges of our own abilities or performance.
- When people scale themselves, they either get too overconfident in their abilities or performance or rather underestimate their abilities to a great extent.
This is in itself one of the primary reasons for a stunted growth of Emotional Quotient levels. We need constructive criticism more often to help us develop our Emotional Quotient. While IQ levels are itself not a perfect measure of one’s intelligence, it is even harder to quantify one’s discretion.
In these situations, it is a great way to take in all criticism that comes your way in a positive light. Instead of immediately opposing the proposed criticism and defending yourself, take it in. People with high emotional quotients are the ones who are more introspective.
You need to take out time to reflect upon and understand the recent events. Once you get introspective, you will see all of the criticisms that you’ve faced in a positive light. This type of constructive criticism outlook on situations and events will help you conquer your emotions and think rationally, taking away key points from the recent event or criticism.
Increase your self-awareness through simple acts
Most of the time when we are doing something or talking, we are indifferent to the thoughts and feelings of both ourselves and the people around us.
Knowing oneself perfectly is the way to begin with understanding and empathizing with others. Simple acts like:
- Maintaining a diary
- Taking the Myers-Briggs personality test
- Taking time daily for some introspection
- Seeking feedback
and other such activities are a great way to improve your self-awareness.
Listening to your instincts or ‘inner voice’ is often considered to be one of the most effective ways to improve your self-awareness. The moment you work on improving your self-awareness is when you start seeing other people and life in general in an entirely new perspective.
Gaining deeper and meaningful insights into your own behavior and feelings is an essential to begin understanding others and working on your Emotional Quotient skills.
Take control of your thoughts and feelings
(Image via: Wikihow)
We are often prone to get carried away with emotions. It is in such moments that we become weaker and inclined to take hasty and faulty decisions of which we are not proud of at a later point of time.
People with higher EQ’s have a better control over their emotions. To gain control of your thoughts and feelings, never react to situations, instead respond to them.
Where reacting is an unconscious process, letting your emotions take control of the situation, responding is entirely the opposite. Responding involves some kind of conscious thinking and it needs valid reasons as backing to respond in a particular way.
It is often incorporating the habit of responding instead of reacting is a great way to take complete control of your thoughts and emotions. People with higher EQ’s do not take immediate actions based on their temporary feelings and emotions, instead they let it calm down and reflect upon it at a later point of time.
Listen more. Communicate better.
As the saying goes, “Most people do not listen with the intent to understand; they listen with the intent to reply”, people truly lack good listening skills in the age of the internet.
Everybody wants to get heard, while not making a decent effort into listening to the thoughts of others. Listening is one of the essential components of communicating and one must not forget that effective communication is a two-way channel of sharing thoughts and ideas.
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Developing a habit of listening to the other person and what they have to say is a great way to develop empathy, understand them better and to avoid any assumptions regarding they meant. Great leaders inspire thought and action into their people and effective listening is one of the factors that people with higher EQ’s possess.
Letting other people have their say and convey what’s on their mind is an important trait and a habit that will help one develop their EQ levels.
Develop Empathy for those around you
Empathy and compassion for fellow living beings are pretty much essential to develop meaningful and intricate connections with people. Developing empathy for those around you is another sign of a higher EQ, which does not make one indifferent of other people’s situations and emotions. Although reasoning and rationale are the important factors in decision-making, consideration of the feelings of other people is a sign of a higher EQ level.
Discerning the thoughts and feelings of those around you is an essential skill to succeed in a workplace environment, both as an employee or as a leader. This trait allows people to service their customers better and to understand what their requirements are in a much better fashion. Your skills in empathizing with others define most of the relationships that you’ll ever form with friends or customers.
Motivate yourselves and others
The ability to motivate oneself and others in the pursuit of a greater mission is the sign of a successful leader and a person with a higher EQ.
EQ is also defined in terms of how motivational a person gets when faced with challenges and setbacks. A positive mindset and a clear understanding of your goals are essential to motivate yourself and others. A constant desire for improvement and a sense of commitment to your long-term goal is something that ought to be developed for a higher EQ.
Acting upon new opportunities with an optimistic mindset is the key to boosting your EQ. Taking immediate actions that help you achieve your long-term goals is how successful people motivate themselves and those around them. Motivation is something that drives people with higher EQ’s to succeed in their undertakings as they readily accept challenges.
Motivate yourself in an optimistic fashion and try to resolve your issue at hand in a calm and peaceful manner, instead of fretting about it.
Learn to Appreciate better
We are often more critique of people’s thoughts and actions and it happens more than often that we do not appreciate the simple things of life.
A sign of higher EQ is in one’s ability to appreciate other’s motivations, thoughts, and actions. Closely related to empathy, appreciation is a great way to connect with people on a deeper level and to accept people the way they are.
This act is one of the elements of an efficient form of social skills, and helps in conflict management, collaborating effectively and initiating change and to achieve success. The ability to easily talk and connect with others is a great sign of a highly developed EQ. Concerns about others and their progress are what emotional intelligence is in practice.
There have been several cases in the world where people with extremely high IQ’s have failed in their careers, yet people with higher EQ’s and moderate IQ’s have been more successful. There also have been studies from the Harvard that prove that there is actually no correlation between one’s IQ levels and their career success.
So, what do you think about these tips and improving your Emotional quotient in general? Shout out your thoughts and comments below.