Ever noticed someone in public expressing feelings of happiness or sadness and thought, “Awkward,” or wondered, “What’s going on with them?” Ever winced after sending a text or an emoji too soon, or wasted thirty seconds trying to find the perfect emoji or words to text? Ever felt encouraged and motivated around someone who knows how to get people inspired?
Everywhere there are people there are emotions. There is no place on the planet where an emotional vacuum exists. Emotions even characterize and motivate every global religious deity from ancient to post-modern eras.
Emotions are important. Emotions are normal. Emotions can get in the way of our greatest accomplishments. Emotions also open us to achievement as we learn to listen to them and put them to work for us.
Did you know each person has an emotional quotient (EQ)? Like everybody with a measurable IQ (intellectual quotient: a ‘mental fitness’ score to see how well our minds think abstractly, solve problems, and reason), everyone has an identifiable EQ (an ‘emotional fitness’ score to see how well we identify, control, and manage our own feelings and the feelings of others).
Becoming aware of our EQ is useful knowledge to improve and develop how we value our emotions and the emotions of the people around us. Our EQ can be nurtured like good parenting helps a family develop into maturity.
Here are three things you can do today to help better "coach-up" your EQ:
1) Identify your Emotions & Validate them: Do a self-emo check. Ask yourself, “What am I feeling?” “Why am I feeling this way?” Listen to your answer. It is appropriate and ok for you to feel this way. Breathe.
2) Identify their Emotions: Take another deep breath. Look and Listen to the person or those in the room. Look at each of the people and groups of people and see what their faces, body posture, and body language are telling you. Ask yourself, “What does that emotion look like to me,” and, “What is the vibe in the room feel like to me?” Listen to your answer. Tell yourself, “Ok, this is the way I understand them or the room to be feeling.”
3) Put your Emotions to Work: Now that you know more, ask yourself, “What is the most important and constructive way to respond?” Whatever the reasons others are feeling the way they are feeling, you can choose to act with compassion, empathy, and vulnerability. Remove the conjunction “but” from your language and use “and” or only clear declarative sentences with no conjunction at all. Take another deep breath and ask, “What is the issue we are dealing with?” Listen to the answer(s). Ask for clarity about the issue or concern. “What is the goal for today to keep us moving forward?”