14, March 2018
It may not be the best-kept secret that Emotional Intelligence (EI) sits on top of Intelligence Quotient (IQ). EI holds the trump card over the IQ, especially in the corporate world. It is because EI can help in leading a team more proficiently than merely assessing their cerebral intelligence. It provides a framework for identifying emotional team dynamics while managing those dynamics to build a cohesive juggernaut.
A high IQ person can even become a war criminal or a serial killer! However, a high EQ (Emotional Quotient) person is very likely not to. For them, harnessing empathy – along with identifying and regulating one’s emotion and that of others – hold the key to unlocking their Emotional Intelligence.
“Emotional intelligence is the ability to sense, understand, and effectively apply the power and acumen of emotions as a source of human energy, information, connection, and influence”
Emotional Intelligence as a competency is required for all leaders to engage with their teams, and help them to learn how to be efficient, driven and constructive.
Identifying our emotions during any event or situation is the first step of understanding our emotions. It is like the saying “A problem well defined is half solved.” Identifying one’s emotions and expressing the same without reacting is how one can effectively manage emotional outbursts and inner turmoil.
What has made us survive from the real jungles as we evolved is the emotion ‘Fear’. We have moved out of real jungles to the concrete jungles. Still, our fear reigns supreme during certain moments whether critical or banal, in our lives. Now, if we have to deal with the dangerous wild animals on a daily basis, then it is vital for us to be afraid. Otherwise, we will not survive. Barely a night will pass before we have already become the most preferred brunch of the Savannah.
The basic ‘fight or flight’ mechanism – caused by any threat – is the only survival mechanism for human beings. But why do we fear in the safe environments that we call our homes or our workplaces? We do not have the creepy crawlies of the night lurking in our vicinities. Even the largest land insect can be thwarted by the use of a tennis bat.
Yet, we grow anxious when we are presenting or speaking in front of our clients or bosses. We feel intimidated while partaking in debates and discourses with our peers during meetings, seminars or social outings.
Is it the right emotion for us to emote? Or are we just confused?
In today’s world of advanced technologies, virtual communication has taken over the physical face-to-face meetings. Skype and WhatsApp are ruling the interaction ecosystem. People seem to prefer text messaging than sitting down to talk things out. Career has taken precedence over one’s health and life. Gaining popularity has become more important than acquiring knowledge.
These changes, both intricate and blatant, may be some of the reasons why we do not naturally emote, and instead, we camouflage our instincts with racquet emotions. An emotion which is not true. For instance, if you lose your wallet – it must be sadness that you should emote. It a natural emotion. But, many times, it may be anger that prevails, which plays the role of a racquet emotion.
“There are no good and bad emotions. They all bring vital messages and are key to our emotional intelligence”
What you or others think, feel and react, as well as a deeper understanding of these faculties will help us behave appropriately in any situation.
Empathy as a communication skill should be developed; not just understanding the emotions of others but also to rightly identify and communicate emotions. Businesses are using empathy to create and innovate. The best way to innovate is for us to empathize with our associates, customers and stakeholders. After all, ideas that work come from pain points or frustrations that people have in products and services.
And unless you are about to go on wild safari, you must realize that it is not a jungle out there. Developing Emotional Intelligence is one of the milestones on your journey to realization, and your path to a successful career, and a productive and healthy lifestyle.