There are many ways to improve your emotional quotient (EQ). IQ and EQ should go hand-in-hand to help you navigate through life and reach your goals. You should incorporate practices into your daily life that will help you improve in any of these areas.
Reading is a good way to enhance IQ. You gain more knowledge from reading about different topics or listening to podcasts. Basically, you need to take in more information and learn from them to help you improve your IQ.
On the other hand, enhancing EQ requires a different method. Do you think you have a high EQ? If you think you’re EQ is average or poor; these tips should help you improve your Emotional Quotient. If you or a friend are on the high IQ side; then these tips can also help you improve your EQ.
1. Ask yourself how you feel each day.
When you wake up in the morning, you already know if you still feel sleepy or energized. So it seems nonsense to ask yourself how you feel. But try to do it each morning upon waking up. You will find that sleepy or energized are not the only emotions that you feel. Try to rate how you are feeling from 1 to 10 and see if you can spot a pattern. Are you feeling less positive when it rains in the mornings? Do you feel more energetic on Mondays or on Fridays? Learning to read how you truly feel is a good start to improve your emotional quotient.
2. Ask yourself how you feel at different times during the day.
Everyone has times during the day when they have more energy and times when they have low energy. High energy times do not necessarily coincide with the times when you are most busy. We exert more effort in our work during times when we are low on energy and feeling lethargic. Tune in to yourself every now and then during the day. Try to see when your emotions and energy are at its peak and its lowest. This can help you figure out when you’re most productive during the day. This way, you can schedule your more challenging tasks during your high energy times.
3. Ask others how they feel about you.
This may sound silly but some people are actually able to sense how others feel. Or if they are not able to accurately do so; then at least they can give you feedback on how you come across. Do you come across as unapproachable when in fact, you are wanting to join in on your colleague’s conversation? Getting the opinion of somebody close to you can help. Getting the opinion of someone not as close to you can also give you surprising and illuminating feedback.
4. Observe other people’s actions and emotions.
Spend some time sitting at a cafe or a park and just watch people and their interactions with each other. Make sure not to stare though as people might find you rude. Just observe them casually. Bring a friend as an accomplice if you have to so you don’t come across as someone suspicious. You learn a lot about how people show their emotions thru their facial expressions, gestures and tone of voice. You might even gain insight on how others understand your own gestures and expressions. Learning from other people’s reactions can help you understand your own feelings better. It also a great way to improve your emotional quotient.
5. Write down your thoughts and emotions.
Just like how writing the steps to a goal helps you keep track of what step to take next; writing down your thoughts and feelings help you process them and better understand yourself. This allows you to review your emotions throughout the day and maybe even realize what triggered them. This will also help you come up with a plan of action. So you can manage your reaction the next time you catch yourself being triggered the same way emotionally.
6. Learn to verbally communicate how you feel.
Practice communicating to others exactly how you feel without disrespecting them. This is hard to do so practicing this will be helpful. Be sure to let the other person know that you do not intent to offend them. Tell them that you are just going to be honest with them. Assure them that you want them to give their feedback and correct your assumptions if you are wrong.
7. Learn to express your feelings of appreciation.
Most of us have this habit of holding back praise or appreciation for somebody’s else’s actions or achievements. In fact, expressing your appreciation verbally can be a pleasurable experience for both of you. If you can verbally communicate your feelings of joy and pride for their achievement; then you will make the other person and yourself, feel even better. We all know how appreciation can boost our mood so learn to share the good vibes.
8. Think before you speak or act on your emotions.
Although practicing how to communicate your feelings is good; thinking of what to say and how to say it first, is even better. Take a pause to observe the situation. See first how other people are reacting. This is a good way for you to compose yourself. Review your thoughts and feelings before you turn them into words. This will not only help you avoid awkward silences after you’ve blurted out something hastily; it will help you communicate your thoughts and feelings more clearly. Learning how to express yourself in different ways will greatly improve your emotional quotient as well as your relationships.
9. Learn to listen well and don’t change the topic even when you feel uncomfortable.
This is especially important when you are being criticized or you are in an argument. Instead of trying to change the topic or being louder than the other person; listen to what they are saying first. Listen well and really listen. While you are listening, do so without thinking of how to get back at them. Listen with the intention of learning from what you are being told. Don’t feel offended, unless their reasoning is really baseless. See if there are questions you can ask or points that you can discuss. This way you can clear up or correct any misunderstanding.
10. Listen to your body and how you feel more often.
One of the best way to connect with yourself emotionally is to listen to your body. More often than not, we are driven to act by the thoughts in our head. We often ignore what our body is telling us. How many times have you gone |to work even when our body is clearly telling you to rest? You still ended up taking some days of leave from work to nurse a cold or fever; or worse had to be hospitalized. If you had listened to your body; you would have only spent a day to rest and be back on your feet again.
Obviously, these tips all involve learning how to connect to your feelings. Knowing your own feelings will help you understand your self better. We often mask our true emotions with the persona that we present to the outside world. In order to be “perfect”; we put our best foot forward and hide our flaws. Our emotions are the clue to what we consider our weaknesses and imperfections. By understanding our feelings; we can better manage them and transform our selves to become better.
While IQ requires us to rely on our mental energy, EQ requires that we rely more on our emotions; how we feel in our bodies. Let us not forget that mind and body are connected. Learning how to connect and manage your emotions will also help improve your state of mind and body. This in turn, will help you perform better in different areas in your life.
Learning how to connect to your emotions, to communicate them to others and to listen to others; is an important aspect of your path to success. After all, you will be relying on the help of many people along the way to achieve your goals. How you relate to other people is just as important as your skills and knowledge.
Are you already practicing some of these tips? If so, tell us how it has improved your emotional connection to yourself and to others.