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If you studied psychology, sociology, or health, then you may have heard of the term: emotional intelligence. But, you may still be wondering about what it is and its importance to everyday life. So, let me start there.
Emotional intelligence is a psychological term used to describe how someone recognizes and manages all their emotions. It’s how a person cares for their emotional needs and wants without anyone or anything interfering. There are 4 types of emotional intelligence: self-awareness, self-management, social awareness, and relationship management.
The 4 Types of Emotional Intelligence
Our lives are so jam-packed with business and chaos that we sometimes tend to put ourselves on the back burner. We become so busy with our daily routine that we rarely take time off to assess how we feel. Self-awareness is about how you accurately assess your emotions and respond to the situations at hand. Self-aware people understand what triggers them, what motivates them, and the types of self-care they need to practice daily to live a healthy lifestyle.
To grow your self awareness you should always leave yourself time to reflect on the day, building healthy habits in your routine, and asking loved ones for feedback on what you can do better.
This emotional intelligence type is self explanatory. It’s about how you actually manage your emotions once you’ve come across them. Self management focuses on what and how you respond to certain situations. This requires a bit of knowledge on self-care practices and having self awareness. If you’re working on building your self management skills then ask yourself these three questions.
- What is my immediate response to the situation in front of me?
- Was I able to remain calm and collective?
- How can I work on making sure that my emotions are always in check?
- I actually wrote an article on how to check your emotions. Please read it here.
Social awareness is about the empathy you have for others and the world around you. Empathetic people tend to understand better how their actions affect others and know when they must take a step back. Think about it like this. Who would you rather hang out with?
Someone who listens to how you feel? or Someone who makes every situation about themselves?
I know I personally would pick the first option. Social awareness requires you to be emotionally and mentally present by practicing mindfulness tactics like deep breathing, meditation, active listening, and observation.
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Finally, there is relationship management. Relationship management looks at how you combine the first three emotional intelligence types to manage your personal and professional relationships. It’s about how you use this combination to motivate, inspire, and encourage the people around you to perform at their highest levels. To further it, you must understand how your personality and traits mesh with other types and learn how to use that to your advantage. In other words, this type looks at how you use your emotions and those of others to manage interactions successfully.
Why is it Important to Understand Emotional Intelligence?
Emotional intelligence allows you to understand and manage your emotions to motivate yourself, create positive social interactions, and maintain a healthy lifestyle. It’s the first step in realizing your true potential. Understanding your emotional intelligence and the 4 types of emotional intelligence comes with many health and personal benefits. People with higher emotional intelligence are less likely to become easily overwhelmed with stress or emotion, bounce back from stressful situations quickly, and know-how to deal with the negative emotions of themselves and others.