EQ Over IQ: How Emotional Intelligence is Crucial to Success
by Enigma Life
“Emotional intelligence, more than any other factor, more than I.Q., or expertise, accounts for 85% to 90% of success at work... I.Q. is a threshold competence. You need it, but it doesn’t make you a star. Emotional intelligence can.” There isn’t much emphasis on emotional intelligence and its use on the road to success, because we’re often taught that there’s no room for emotions on the trek to professional success. We see examples on TV and in movies of successful people who are cold, with no time for relationships, no time for family, no time for recreation. In reality, those with higher EQs enjoy more success in all areas of life. EQs are crucial to interpersonal relationships, which are essential to any advancement.
So where does your EQ stand? Here are some ways to measure:
- Are you organized? Managing your life in a way that it runs efficiently is important. Managing your emotions is also important, albeit a little more difficult. Having a high EQ means being able to balance your own needs with those of others.
- Are you intuitive? People with high EQs often perform well in interpersonal relationships because they can sense other people’s feelings and understand them without needing to be told what’s wrong.
- Can you balance relationships? The thing about interpersonal relationships is that you almost always have many of them in place: workplace relationships, friendships, romantic relationships, family relationships, etc. Knowing how to give those relationships the right amount of time, communicating clearly within them, and managing conflict properly when it arises are all indicators of a high EQ.
- Are you self-aware? Do you understand your own emotions? Can you explain them to someone else if they weren’t understanding you? If you can logically explain your emotions and get someone to see your vantage point, even if they don’t agree, you may have a high EQ.
Those with a high EQ put in the time and effort to maintain their relationships. They know their emotions are important, and acknowledge that those of others are as well. If you feel you’re missing the mark in any of these areas, there are some behaviors you can avoid to improve your EQ.
- Work on being less selfish. That is not to say that you shouldn’t participate in self-care. Rather, it means that you should make an effort to be more empathetic. Think of things in with a wider worldview and consider the needs of others and how you can assist in helping them meet them without taking a toll on your own emotional health.
- Exercise self-awareness. Don’t be afraid to be introspective. Ask yourself the important questions. Be honest with yourself. If you’ve ever found yourself on the end of “are you trying to convince me or yourself?,” it’s time to be honest. It’s important to understand why you do the things you do and why you react to things in a certain way.
- Stay away from emotional extremes. If you ever find yourself trying to keep your mouth shut because you’re uncomfortable expressing your feelings, that’s a point to work on. Similarly, you shouldn’t find yourself so angry you’re screaming and cursing at someone. A high EQ requires managing your emotions so you never find yourself at either end of the spectrum. You shouldn’t ever find yourself fighting your feelings. Likewise, you should never find yourself debating whether a decision should be made with your head or your heart.
- Keep yourself open to new experiences. While you can have solid beliefs of your own, you should be open to learning and hearing about alternate perspectives and brand new things altogether. By learning more and taking more perspectives into consideration, relating to all different people will become easier. Again, you don’t necessarily have to agree, just try to understand.
- Stay positive and balanced. There’s plenty of negativity out there, especially in the emotional space. It’s very important not to let that negativity overcome you. Furthermore, it is important to keep your emotions, and your life, balanced.
Jim Rohn once said “Our emotions need to be as educated as our intellect. It is important to know how to feel, how to respond, and how to let life in so that it can touch you.” It’s crucial not only to be in tune with other’s emotions, but our own. As Daniel Goleman described it, “If you are tuned out of your own emotions, you will be poor at reading them in other people.”