What Is Emotional Intelligence?

Emotional intelligence refers to an individual’s ability to perceive, understand, manage and express their own emotions and those of others, in order to promote personal development.

Why Is Emotional Intelligence Important?

Emotional intelligence is important because it enables people to make better choices, by analyzing the consequences of their decisions. It also enables individuals to better understand the reasons for their behavior, thereby reducing frustration, anxiety and stress. It simplifies decision-making and improves interpersonal relations.

Emotional intelligence helps individuals show courage and feel pride. People who demonstrate leadership typically have good emotional intelligence.

What Are the 5 Axes of Emotional Intelligence?

The 5 axes of emotional intelligence include:

  • Self-awareness: the ability to recognize and identify one’s own emotions.
  • Self-control: the ability to manage and contain one’s own emotions, reactions and behaviors.
  • Self-motivation: the ability to find strong intrinsic motivators.
  • Empathy: the ability to put oneself in another person’s shoes to understand their perceptions, emotions, thoughts, actions, etc.
  • Interpersonal relations: the ability to develop solid, healthy relationships with other people.

How to Develop Emotional Intelligence?

Part of emotional intelligence is innate, already present within individuals.

A person’s upbringing, experiences and character naturally shape their emotional intelligence over time. A person can, however, consciously develop emotional intelligence by practicing open-mindedness, curiosity, sensitivity and so on.

To develop emotional intelligence, a person can also:

  • Learn to better manage and understand their emotions
  • Try to understand other people’s points of view
  • Develop listening skills and empathy
  • Take responsibility for past mistakes
  • Avoid hasty judgments
  • Take relevant training courses
  • Seek professional help

What Are the Benefits of Emotional Intelligence?

The benefits of developing emotional intelligence include:

  • Greater self-confidence
  • Better understanding of feelings, strengths, doubts, etc.
  • Increased intrinsic motivation
  • Improved social skills
  • Greater communication skills

How to Maximize Emotional Intelligence at Work?

Managers wishing to maximize emotional intelligence at work can:

  • Take relevant training courses to develop their own emotional intelligence
  • Demonstrate empathy and understanding with their team
  • Evaluate their own and their employees’ emotional intelligence using tests
  • Introspect and encourage their employees to do the same
  • Implement human management practices

What Are the Other Types of Intelligence?

Other types of intelligence include:

  • Logical-mathematical intelligence
  • Verbo-linguistic intelligence
  • Musical-rhythmic intelligence
  • Bodily-kinesthetic intelligence;
  • Visual-spatial intelligence
  • Interpersonal intelligence
  • Naturalist-ecologist intelligence

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