Emotional intelligence is the intrinsic potential to feel, use, communicate, recognize, remember, learn from, manage and understand emotions. To do this well one must also learn to manage emotions to extract the maximum benefit. Raising your EQ is not just another theoretical concept from Goleman, but an effective arsenal for one’s upward progression.
As a lot of students will want to understand the concept of EQ, let me give this example. You are a college student who had hoped to get 90% in a course that was important for your future career aspirations. You have just found out you got just 45%. What do you do?
If you wish to master EQ, you will sketch out a specific plan for ways to improve your percentage and resolve to follow through. A key indicator of self-motivation, also known as Achievement motivation, is your ability to form a plan for overcoming obstacles to achieve long-term goals.
Having great intellectual abilities may make you a superb fiscal analyst or legal scholar, but a highly developed emotional intelligence will make you a candidate for CEO or a brilliant trial lawyer.
Research suggests that a person’s emotional intelligence (EQ) might be a greater predictor of success than his or her intellectual intelligence (IQ), despite an assumption that people with high IQs will naturally accomplish more in life. There was a time when IQ was considered the leading determinant of success but now “emotional intelligence” being the strongest indicator of human success is demanded more at the time of recruitment by the companies.
Emotional sensitivity, emotional memory, emotional processing and problem solving ability, and emotional learning ability are a part of this process. What must be done is to accurately identify emotions, learn to use emotions to help you think, understand what causes emotions, manage to stay open to these emotions in order to capture the wisdom of our feelings.
Let us consider an example. You have been given the task of managing a team that has been unable to come up with a creative solution to a work problem. What is the first thing that you do? The right thing is to organize an off-site meeting aimed specifically at encouraging the team to get to know each other better.
Let me explain it better. As a leader of a group of individuals charged with developing a creative solution, your success will depend on the climate that you can create in your project team. Creativity is likely to be stifled by structure and formality; instead, creative groups perform at their peaks when rapport, harmony and comfort levels are most high. In these circumstances, people are most likely to make the most positive contributions to the success of the project.
Let us now take another relevant example that we in India see all around us.
You are trying to calm down a colleague who has worked herself into a fury because the driver of another car has cut dangerously close in front of her. What do you do?
The right approach is to tell him/ her about a time something like this happened to you, and how angry you felt, until you saw the other driver was on the way to the hospital.
All research shows that anger and rage seriously affect one’s ability to perform effectively. Your ability to avoid or control this emotional reaction in yourself and others is a key indicator of emotional intelligence.
The above examples must have made the concept of EQ clear to you. Emotional intelligence is your ability to acquire and apply knowledge from your emotions and the emotions of others in order to be more successful and lead a more fulfilling life.
Written for PT Education