Emotional Intelligence Awareness Month is an annual designation observed in October.
Take time during the month of October to become more aware of your Emotional Intelligence and learn precisely what and how it works. Find different approaches to perceiving, understanding, and managing emotions and putting them to work for you.
Some people are born with EQ, while others can think of it as a skill set that needs to be acquired. With practice, it’s possible to develop or strengthen it.
Here are a few ways to do just that:
Self-awareness. Consider setting a regular time or day to journal. This can allow you to reflect on how you behaved in interactions and make a note of things that bothered you. You can go back and read over them from time to time and “study” yourself. You can also meditate and observe your thoughts.
Self-regulation. It may help to practice deep breathing exercises regularly, especially during conflict. You can learn to reframe challenges as opportunities in disguise and “failures” as learning experiences. Try to practice radical acceptance of any emotions that come up and verbalize what you’re feeling.
Motivation. Consider taking time out and celebrating each one of your wins. When you decide you want to do something new, it’s a good idea to identify your “why.” It can also help to break down your to-do list into bite-size chunks, or micro-tasks, and to work with an accountability partner or coach.
Empathy. To build empathy, try paying attention to your surroundings. See if you can pick up on the “energy” of your environment. You could also try talking to new people or volunteering for a cause you care about. If you’re stuck in traffic, consider looking around at people sitting in their cars and seeing what you can pick up about them.
Social skills. Aim to put yourself in new situations. When you do, try to pay attention to your body language and maintain eye contact. Practicing active listening can be beneficial, too. Consider this quote from Gandhi: “Speak only if it improves upon silence.”