emotionally intelligent people

7 things people with emotional intelligence don’t do

Those with a high level of emotional intelligence communicate more effectively, adapt to change, handle stress and conflict productively, build stronger relationships, and also perform better at work.
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Many of us believe that the most intelligent way to go about life is to separate ourselves from our feelings and emotions. However, that couldn’t be further from the truth because emotions and intelligence go hand in hand. This is where the concept of ‘emotional intelligence’ comes in. One of the most powerful yet undervalued human traits, emotional intelligence is the capacity to be aware of your emotions and that of others. Your level of emotional intelligence impacts how you behave, navigate social complexities and make decisions. It also enables you to manage difficult situations calmly and effectively.

The concept of emotional intelligence has been around since the 1990s when psychologists John D Mayer and Peter Salovey presented their research on the topic to the academic world. However, it was Daniel Goleman, author of the New York Times bestseller Emotional Intelligence: Why It Can Matter More Than IQ who took the study a step further. Goleman established the importance of emotional intelligence in business leadership and explored the contagious nature of emotions at work and the link between leaders’ emotional state and their companies’ financial success.

The value and benefits of developing the qualities associated with emotional intelligence are immense. You become self-aware, develop the ability to control your emotions, become more motivated to succeed, improve your social skills and build empathy. Those with a high level of emotional intelligence are also able to adapt to change and handle stress and conflict better. They thrive in both their social and professional environments and have fewer mental health issues such as anxiety and depression.

People with high emotional intelligence are the leaders and change-makers of the world. Here’s a list of things people with emotional intelligence don’t do that define who they truly are.

They don’t make assumptions

People with low emotional intelligence are quick to form opinions and fall prey to confirmation bias. Meaning, they solely rely on their existing beliefs and values and ignore evidence to the contrary. On the other hand, people with high emotional intelligence think before they act and do not make assumptions or generalisations about other people or situations. They pause and devote time to their thoughts and consider the possible consequences of their opinion. They probe and ask questions to better understand the other person’s experience and perspective.

They don’t complain                                                                            

People with low emotional intelligence have the habit of complaining since they consider themselves victims in challenging situations. Unable to deal with the situation, they seek to blame someone or something for the same. They essentially see the glass as half-empty instead of half-full. People with high emotional intelligence on the other hand are especially good at looking at the brighter side of things and learning from mistakes or disappointments. That is because they are constantly motivated by their goals, which enhances their curiosity and makes them focus on a higher purpose. Emotionally intelligent people do not feel that a situation is beyond their control and think of constructive ways to deal with it. Most importantly, an emotionally intelligent person takes full responsibility for their life. They don’t blame others and take full ownership of their actions and emotions.

They don’t gossip

Emotionally intelligent people strive for deeper, more meaningful conversations rather than focusing on gossip and mindless banter. They’re mindful of the fact that words can hurt and that talking ill about people behind their backs is not a good habit. As such, they don’t engage in criticism or gossip since they are in better control of their emotions. Instead, they seek uplifting and meaningful connections by expressing their feelings clearly and kindly. They separate judgment from facts during conversations to escape the negativity that gossiping breeds. In fact, when they hear gossip, ridicule or unkind comments, they make it their first reaction to imagine how it would feel to be on the receiving end. This sense of empathy helps them tune in to other people’s feelings and forge strong relationships.

They don’t rely on others for happiness

Emotionally intelligent people are self-reliant and content. They don’t depend on others to make their lives happier. Instead, they cultivate happiness for themselves and those around them. They find goals and hobbies that make them feel good and focus on the present. Since they can navigate their emotions better, emotionally intelligent people find it easier to experience joy. Once they tap into their inner selves and realise what makes them truly happy, they live out that purpose and continue to flourish. Emotionally intelligent people are aware that they won’t just stumble upon happiness. They understand that the quest for happiness is futile if you can’t enjoy the simple joys of life. They cultivate a positive attitude to see life as a blessing and express gratitude for the same every day.

They don’t indulge in negative self-talk

A major step in building emotional intelligence is stopping negative self-talk in its tracks. Negative thoughts and feelings do untold damage, and the more you ruminate on them, the more power they gain over you. If not regulated, these negative thoughts can create stress, decreased motivation and even lead to depression. Emotionally intelligent people are aware of this fact, and can curb cynical thoughts such as “I can’t do this” or “I should have done better”. They don’t let their irrational thoughts hijack their emotions and know how to stay focused. Even if they make mistakes and experience failures, they choose to learn from them and move forward without losing their self-worth.

They don’t dwell on the past

Emotionally intelligent people know when to let go of the past. They honour the mistakes and choices they made in the past and learn from them, but they don’t get stuck there. Dwelling on the past is a roadblock that keeps you from moving forward. It is like doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result. Emotionally intelligent people understand the importance of living in the present. They are too busy thinking of present goals and future possibilities to spend time dwelling upon things that didn’t work out in the past. They take what they’ve learned from the past and try to apply those lessons to improve their present and future.

They avoid conflicts

Emotionally intelligent people don’t waste their time and energy on bickering or creating conflicts. Instead,  they focus on positive interactions. Unnecessary disagreements and friction can induce stress and anxiety, which can make you vulnerable to high blood pressure, headaches and a dwindling focus. However, the chances of this happening to emotionally intelligent people are significantly less. They choose to control their emotions and empathise during tough conversations. They don’t allow their frustration or anger to influence their actions. While it’s important to stand up for yourself and be straightforward in your communication, it is smart to avoid getting involved in conflicts that go nowhere. Emotionally intelligent people are wise to pick and choose their battles.

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