Emotional Intelligence: The Importance of a High EQ

Emotional Intelligence: The Importance of a High EQ

“One ought to hold on to one's heart; for if one lets it go, one soon loses control of the head too.”

Friedrich Nietzsche 

What is emotional intelligence and how is it formed?

Defined as the ability to understand, use and reason with one’s own emotions, emotional intelligence (also known as EQ) is a measure of one’s ability to defuse interpersonal conflicts, empathise with others’ struggles, communicate aptly and relieve stress.

Each person’s EQ is dependent on a variety of factors, but science seems to have put the “nature vs nurture” argument to rest in terms of what defines one’s EQ. That means that emotional intelligence is not only dependent on biological or genetic factors, but also on one’s life experiences including their upbringing.

Where is emotional intelligence applicable?

i. School: Students with better emotional intelligence are more mature, hence they can conduct themselves better and communicate more effectively in the classroom. They will also be able to relate to their peers more agreeably.

ii. Work: It helps people that work together in teams become more attuned to each other, especially if those teams are cross-cultural and global. People with high EQ can also work well under pressure.

iii. Relationships: Higher emotional intelligence leads to more sensitivity and reciprocity of other people’s needs, and such people will be able to sense dynamic shifts and empathise with their partner. They would also be better compromisers.

iv. Success: If one’s emotions are managed well one would have more motivation to work hard and pursue their goals. They will self-monitor progress and strive to continually improve their skills and work output.

The four kinds of emotional intelligence

i. Self-awareness: being aware about one’s own emotions and keeping in touch with them. Persons that are high in this EQ learn to trust their own gut and hence become more self-reliant and efficient in decision-making. 

ii. Self-management: the ability to handle one’s emotions and impulses, in a way that it does not interfere with one’s work-life balance. Being high in this EQ would reflect in productive work output, since a person with high self-management would regulate their emotions calmly, by neither denying or supressing them.

iii. Social awareness: this can be basically summed up as one’s ability to gauge social scenarios and communicate with other people effectively. Persons high in this EQ have a lot of empathy, and can hence prevent conflict escalation.

iv. Relationship management: one’s ability to connect with other people and form positive bonds with them. Persons with good relationship management have great negotiation skills and can resolve conflicts easily.

Is it possible to change emotional intelligence in adult life?

There is a lot of evidence to suggest that EQ may be nurtured even after a person has grown up, but it requires conscious hard-work.

i. Unlearning: Social conditioning plagues many of our childhoods. The first step is to unlearn these toxic internalised messages that our culture or upbringings may have taught us, and focus on internal growth. This is known as a growth mindset. Unlearning requires patience and the will to let go of past accepted truths and immerse oneself in rediscovery of the self. There are various ways to practice rediscovery, be that through meditation, exercise or picking up a new hobby. The goal is to become tranquil and gain insight into one’s own mind.

ii. Triggers: A trigger is defined as anything that sparks an intense emotional reaction. They differ from person to person. After unlearning, it is important to learn what one’s triggers are. This may be done by taking the help of a life coach or reading a guide.

iii. Listening: A lot of people are reluctant to hear the truth about themselves and hear constructive feedback from peers or family. To work on one’s emotional intelligence, it is necessary to actively listen to those around oneself and work to improve traits they may point out as disruptive or wrong. 

iv. Love and care: Working on self-love and self-acceptance is important, but so is learning to be compassionate and empathetic. It is necessary to foster a spirit of listening and supporting one’s loved ones. The establishment of self-management and self-awareness is complemented only by social awareness and relationship management.

To know more about EQ assessments visit www.tpsg.in/emotional-intelligence

Written By
Riti Aggarwal

Edited by
Vinaya Bansal


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