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There is a strong chance you’ve not read Emotional Intelligence by Daniel Goleman, the subject seem to have a made it way into what most readers call “ Success Literature” all over the world. But what exactly is emotional intelligence and why is it so important? Well, the “why” is quite clear. Many people find themselves successful in all the traditional ways (i.e. with money and flashy friends) but still not satisfied nor happy. Creating a meaning in life requires strong relationships and doing so requires emotional intelligence.

Everyone knows that high IQ is no guarantee of success, happiness, or virtue, but until Emotional Intelligence, we could only guess why.

So, how does one go about creating a greater sense of emotional intelligence? In this post, I will try outline the nine aspects involved and offer brief descriptions of each:

Awareness. Recognizing individual emotions as they occur, understanding why they occur, and understanding the effects (that goes for both good and bad) they have on you.

Control. Resisting impulses and urges, remaining calm even as chaos develops, and always thinking clearly when those around you can’t.

Assessment. Knowing your strengths and weaknesses, learning from mistakes, and constantly striving to build on what you have in an effort to make yourself better.

Vision. Creating a sense of direction in your life, having the foresight to anticipate problems/needs before they happen, and paying attention to the details.

Creativity. Thinking outside the box, developing a tolerance for uncertainty, and maintaining an openness to change.

Innovation. Seeking out unconventional solutions to problems, keeping an open mind to originality in the world, and applying creativity in practical ways.

Ambition. Setting tough but attainable goals, constantly raising the bar in quest of excellence, and feeling the need for achievement whenever you can.

Independence. Living with a constant sense of who you are, making your own decisions even in the face of peer pressure, and acting despite tremendous risk and doubt.

Optimism. Understanding we all make mistakes, choosing to continue no matter how many times you’ve failed, and always remaining hopeful that success is just around the corner.

Those of you who are unfamiliar, a great way to create a habit are to do so in a month-long trial. Start at the top of the list and work your way down over the six months. Or simply choose whichever you feel will help you most right now and take it from there.

For example, to create a greater sense of consciousness you could start meditating, even if it’s for only three to five minutes a day. For assessment, you could take some time off to be alone with your thoughts, by treating yourself to a solo lunch or spending the afternoon at the park. Or just drive after work with the radio off.

Slowly but surely, you’ll begin to see the changes. As long as you take the time to really imprint these new behaviours – they’re bound to stick and you’re bound to feel the difference.

Photo courtesy of M@rg

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