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Tips on increasing emotional intelligence at work

Tips on increasing emotional intelligence at workImage Credit: Supplied

There has been a lot of research into emotional intelligence over the years. Emotional intelligence is, according to Daniel Goleman (2001), an individual's ability to identify, assess and regulate one's own emotions and also monitor the emotions of others. There are several ways to increase emotional intelligence in the workplace. Some can be done alone, others with the help of a psychologist.

• Managing emotions – It refers to our ability to effectively reduce negative emotions so they do not overwhelm us and affect our judgment. For example, if we consider anger, initially distancing yourself from the situation by counting to 10 or going for a jog will help you think more clearly. Once you have calmed down, you might want to identify why you are angry. In most cases, it is because someone violated a rule that contrasts with your values. Communicate the importance of that rule with the other person so a similar thing does not occur in the future.

• Overcoming failure – Life is not always smooth, but our mindset can make all the difference. Failure can help explain your blind spots and help you better yourself. The majority of people who have achieved huge success have made a choice to embrace failure. By asking various relevant questions such as ''What can I learn from this experience?'' can help yourself move forward.

• Increasing self-awareness – There are numerous ways to increase self-awareness. You may want to consult with an organizational psychologist. Alternatively, you could seek feedback on your performance, which could be done in the form of review sessions with individuals who work with you. Personality assessments are also effective as they facilitate self-reflection.

Interestingly, research by Talent Smart found that 90% of high performers in the workplace possess high emotional intelligence, while 80% of low performers have low EQ. Many studies share similar findings.

Handy Hints:

• If angry, count to 10 or go for a jog to help manage emotions

• Actively learn from mistakes and use them to better yourself

• Plan review sessions at work to seek performance feedback

Did you know that venting your thoughts makes a bad career strategy

Source: Nicola Turner, Special to Jobs & Careers

The writer is Organizational Psychologist, HRI&C