Hello <<First Name>>,
Do you want to be more effective at getting the important things done?
Have you ever considered the role that your Emotional Intelligence capability has on this goal?
Over the next year, the CHOICES newsletter will focus on Emotional Intelligence (EQ, “emotional quotient” for short) and ways you can integrate more effective behaviors into your life, to achieve more successful outcomes.
When I use the term “Emotional Intelligence,” here are some reactions I’ve heard:
So let's clarify what I mean by Emotional Intelligence.
- I'm a Project Manager, I don't have emotion. I have data.
- Emotions? Please…we don't need any more drama in my workplace.
- In my job, being intelligent is more important than being emotional.
- We try to keep our emotions out of our decision making and focus on the facts and what's right for the business.
My favorite definition comes from Joshua Friedman at Six Seconds: “Emotional Intelligence is being smarter with your feelings—accurately appraising emotional data, and using this data to optimize decisions.”
And just to get us all on the same sheet about emotions…
There is an emotional reaction in our bodies going on all the time, whether we choose to acknowledge it or not. This is most often a response by our internal limbic system, centered on the reptilian amygdala part of our brain, secreting chemicals in reaction to outside activities it perceives as threats to our self-preservation. This stimulates a version of the "flight, fight, or freeze" response. And you have little to no conscious choice in this matter.
Think of an encounter you’ve had with a difficult boss or client.
Did you feel a bit on edge?
Perhaps hyper vigilant?
Does your jaw clench?
Breathing become a bit more shallow?
Do you tap your pen, fiddle with your coffee cup, shake your leg?
These are signs of an emotional response going on.
Whether or not you consciously acknowledge the emotional component of this interaction, your thought process is impacted. This influences, often negatively, our own decision ability as well as how we show up interacting with others.
Thinking back on my own executive career, I recall many times going into team meetings, totally unaware of the emotional baggage I was carrying from a previous interaction. In hindsight, I can see how this impacted my attention, colored my decision process, and influenced the team’s productivity. I wish I had known more back then!
What situations generate a consistent emotional reaction for you? How does it influence your decision making and impact your interactions with others?
In our next issue of CHOICES-- The building blocks of EQ
With best wished for the start of a successful 2015--
If exploring EQ is something you'd like to find out more about, please contact VAULT Associates. We can provide EQ introduction sessions, individual leadership coaching, and group development workshops. Certified facilitator in the EQ-I 2.0 Emotional Intelligence Assessment.
Recent blog posts:
Can You Pull Out of the Deep Dive? What situations pull you down into the vortex of anxiety, frustration, desperation? How do you get out?
How to Give Better Advice. Why is it that no one seems to listen to our good advice?