Lately, new ways to describe human interactions, social behaviours, and many facets of psychology have emerged on the social network scene. One of those descriptions is “high emotional intelligence.”
What is emotional intelligence, and why do the people who have it seem to succeed at everything they do?
PSYCHOLOGY TODAY SAYS, “EMOTIONAL INTELLIGENCE IS THE ABILITY TO IDENTIFY AND MANAGE YOUR OWN EMOTIONS AND THE EMOTIONS OF OTHERS.” USUALLY, THE FOLLOWING 3 SKILLS ARE INCLUDED:
1. Emotional awareness, along with being able to identify your personal emotions and the emotions of others
2. The ability to tackle emotions and apply them to activities like problem solving
3. The ability to regulate emotions, including the ability to control your own emotions and the ability to lift-up or calm-down another person
If you are wondering if you have high emotional intelligence (EI), or if you are interested in improving your EI to achieve personal goals in your life or career, here are 11 traits that people with high EI share.
1. THEY ARE NOT PERFECT.
Perfectionism tends to get in the way of a lot of things, like finishing tasks and achieving goals. This happens because perfectionists have trouble starting things, they procrastinate, and are always searching for the correct answer when there usually isn’t one. For this reason, people with EI are not perfectionists. They understand that there is no such thing as “perfection”, and they move forward. When mistakes are made, they learn from them and make adjustments accordingly. Personally, I find myself having to work on this daily because I tend to have moments of over-analyzing, and as a Virgo, perfectionism is something I struggle to leave behind.
2. THEY UNDERSTAND THERE IS A BALANCE BETWEEN WORK AND PLAY.
When you work all day and all week, without making time for yourself, you add stress and health problems to your life. This is why people with EI know when to give themselves a break, and make time for play. In other words, if you need time to disconnect from the world, take the time! Unplugging from the daily grind will certainly reduce stress levels and make you generally more happy.
3. THEY SEE CHANGE AS A WELCOME PART OF LIFE.
Rather than becoming distraught when change emerges, emotionally intelligent people understand that change is a part of life. It includes the good and the bad, and it is better to accept it than fight it. Don’t be afraid of change. Instead, adapt to the changes around you and work with what you have.
4. THEY ARE CURIOUS ABOUT OTHERS.
Regardless of whether someone is outgoing, outspoken, or quiet and subdued, emotionally intelligent people are curious about others around them. This curiousity stems from one being empathic. Empathy is one of the biggest contributing factors of EI, so it should be no surprise that the more you care about others, the more you will be curious about them as well.
5. THEY EXPERIENCE EMPATHY.
As I just mentioned, empathy plays a huge part of having emotional intelligence. Daniel Goleman, psychologist and author of Focus: The Hidden Driver of Excellence, told The Huffington Post that empathy is one of the five components of emotional intelligence.
“[There’s a] spectrum that goes from complete self-absorption to noticing to empathy and to compassion,” Goleman said in a TED talk on compassion. “The simple fact is that if we are focused on ourselves, if we’re preoccupied — which we so often are throughout the day — we don’t really fully notice the other.”
Being more mindful, instead of being completely absorbed in your own world, plants the seeds of compassion – an imperative part of EI.
6. THEY KNOW WHAT THEIR STRENGTHS ARE, AS WELL AS THEIR WEAKNESSES.
Those with EI know what they are good at and what they are not-so-good at. Not only do they accept what their strengths and weaknesses are, they are aware of how to leverage those by working with the right people in the right circumstance.
Read: Emotional Intelligence: Is It More Important than your IQ?
7. THEY ARE SELF-MOTIVATED.
When we were kids we usually did things because there was a reward at the end of it. However, if you were one of those children who did things because it was your goal, that might have helped your EI level today. Those who have the “go-getter” attitude possess another trait of emotional intelligence.
8. THEY DO NOT LIVE IN THE PAST.
People who have high EI refuse to dwell in the past. Why is this? Well it’s because they are far too busy contemplating the possibilities of what tomorrow may bring. Past mistakes never weigh them down with negativity, and they do not hold grudges. Remember, moving forward, not looking behind, is what helps us grow.
9. THEIR FOCUS IS ON THE POSITIVE.
Those who are emotionally intelligent would rather spend their time and energy contributing to the solution, than focusing on the problem. Rather than staying planted in the negative, they see the positive. They focus on what they have control of instead of wasting time focusing on all the things that have gone wrong. They also tend to spend more time with other positive people.
10. THEY ARE DIFFICULT TO OFFEND.
Having high EI also means knowing who you are. And if you have a firm grasp of what it means to be “you”, then it’s pretty difficult for someone to say or do something that will upset you. Emotionally intelligent people have self-confidence and their minds are open. This means they know the difference between humour and degradation.
11. THEY CREATE AND MAINTAIN BOUNDARIES.
Some people may think that those with high EI are easily manipulated, or that they are pushovers due to their kindness and politeness. However, they do know how to set boundaries, and enforce them. In other words, they know how to say “no.”
After reading these 11 traits, do you find yourself having anything to work on? Let us know what you think in the comments!
Written by Raven Fon
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