Your IQ and EQ should go hand-in-hand to help you navigate through life and reach your goals. So if you are lacking in one area, then you should incorporate practices into your daily life that will help you improve.
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 your EQ is average or poor, then 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 are still sleepy or energized. So it seems nonsense to ask yourself how you feel. But try to do it each morning upon waking up. As you do this daily, you will find that being sleepy or energized are not the only emotions that you feel when you wake up in the morning. 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? Do you feel more energetic on Mondays or on Fridays?
2. Ask yourself how you feel at different times during the day.
Everybody has times of the day when they have more energy and times when they have low energy. High energy times do not necessarily coincide with times when you are most busy. Sometimes, we are exerting more effort to work during times when we are low on energy and feeling lethargic. Tune in to yourself every now and then during the day and 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 so you can schedule your more challenging tasks during that time.
3. Ask others how they think you feel.
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. Be observant of 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 casually and 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 through their facial expressions, gestures and tone of voice. You might even gain insight on how others understand your own gestures and expressions.
5. Write down your thoughts and feelings.
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 may also help you come up with a plan of action 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 be sure to let the other person know that you are going to be honest about your feelings and you do not intend to offend them. Assure them that you are expressing your feelings so that they can give their feedback and correct your assumptions if you are wrong.
7. Learn to express your appreciation.
Most of us have this habit of holding back praise or appreciation for somebody’s else’s actions or achievements but expressing them verbally can be a pleasurable experience for both you, the one giving it, and the person receiving it. 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.
Although practicing how to communicate your feelings is good, thinking of what to say and how to say it first, is even better. Taking a pause to observe the situation and see how other people are reacting is a good way for you to compose yourself and 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.
9. Learn to listen well and don’t change the topic.
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 but with the intention of learning from what you are being told. Don’t feel offended, unless their reasoning is really baseless but see if there are questions you can ask or points that you can discuss to clear up or correct any misunderstanding.
10. Listen to your body more often.
One of the best ways 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 and we ignore what our body is telling us. How many of us have insisted on going into work even when our body is clearly telling us to rest? In the end, we had to take a few days off from work to nurse a cold or fever, or worse, had to be hospitalized. But if we listened to our body, we would have only spent a day to rest and be back on our feet again.
Connect To Your Feelings
Obviously, these tips all involve learning how to connect to your feelings. While IQ requires us to rely on our mental energy, EQ requires that we rely more on our physical emotions. Learning how to connect and manage your emotions will also help put you in a more stable state of mind and body which will help you perform better.
Learning how to connect to your emotions, how to communicate them so others understand you and how to listen to others so that you understand how they feel 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 and how you relate to them is just as important as your skills and knowledge. But in order to successfully follow these ways on how to improve your EQ, you have to first make sure that you are emotionally well. So ask yourself, are you emotionally well?
If you are already practicing some of these tips, please do tell us how it has improved your emotional connection to yourself and to others.