Emotional intelligence or EI is the ability to understand and manage your feelings and the feelings of others. Some people can easily describe their own feelings and read others’ without difficulty. They are born with this ability. Others have to work to learn how – just as some kids can draw without every taking a lesson and others have to learn and practice.
EI is important for guiding thinking and actions. It is as important for success in life as having intellectual intelligence. Have you ever wondered why some very smart people always seem to get themselves into some very bad situations? Have you noticed rude behavior in your friends or colleagues and wondered why?
Often these behaviors indicate a person's EI level. Here you'll find out how to build your EI.
Building EI is about:
You may envy others who sail through school with high marks, get accepted into medical, law and engineering schools with ease. But having academic success doesn’t guarantee success and happiness in life. Being grounded, having control over your feelings, getting along well with others and keeping cool under pressure are high indicators of strong emotional intelligence.
To these questions, answer “yes,” “no,” or “sometimes.” There are no rights or wrongs. You can also give yourself a grade on a scale of 1 - 10, ten being the highest or the biggest “yes.”
1. Motivate myself to get things done?
2. Influence other people?
3. Recognize my reactions to other people or situations?
4. Express myself clearly?
5. Gain respect from others?
6. Know how to say the “right” thing to get the right result?
7. Know how to be positive even under difficult situations?
8. Encourage others to help me out?
If your answer to all these questions is “yes,” or if you have given yourself a grade of 8-10, then you have excellent EI. You know how to get along with others. You are grounded and manage your feelings well.
If you answered “no” or “sometimes” to many of the questions, then the exercises on these pages will help you strengthen and build your EI. EI can be learned just like math, languages and science. And just like these subjects, you will have to do some work to achieve success. But it’s entirely doable.
Over the years, I’ve watched students, colleagues and clients make amazing achievements in their levels of EI and you can too.
Your motivation and willingness to practice the exercises and activities on these pages will determine your success. You can do it!
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