Being Emotionally Intelligent Is Important!

This article was first published on https://sheroes.in/  on 11th May, 2016

Being Emotionally Intelligent Is Important!

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A thirty year old successful chartered accountant called me. She had been a participant of my workshop around eight years ago. She narrated her life story in a few minutes and it sat me thinking. She married the guy she loved after a four year courtship but wanted to get separated after a year. She seemed unhappy with her work too as it was stressful. Her voice sounded lifeless, her tone hardened. Since I generally remember my workshops participants and their personalities long after their completion of workshops, I often talk and meet many of these young people whom I guided as adolescents.

When I met these young, ambitious working brigade of girls and boys, I often wonder – they are intelligent (have a look at their grades and packages) and they are emotional (they show them through their reactions). But are they emotionally intelligent? Perhaps not.

Daniel Goleman explains the four pillars of emotional intelligence as self-awareness, self-management, social awareness and social skills.

For personal and professional happiness, women need to strengthen all the four parameters. This article will focus on the first two pillars while the next article will cover the remaining two.

Self-Awareness: Women, since childhood get conditioned by expectations of others. If they are given a social rule book to follow at an early age, they bend their personalities to fit in the mould of social approval. As a result, they fail to assess their own emotions. When girls are not aware about their own emotional well-being, they lead a life designed by others. They never feel at home because they have never asked themselves:

  1. What makes me happy, excited, and ecstatic?
  2. What makes me sad, frustrated and depressed?
  3. What makes me angry and furious?
  4. What makes me feel like I have achieved something?
  5. What makes me feel loved, valued and respected?
  6. What do I love to do?
  7. What do I dislike or fear in people/situations?
  8. What scares me?

If a woman can answer these questions personally and professionally, she would gain emotional awareness about herself. She would be able to read and understand her own emotions which will surely help her to improve her work performance and relationships.

Each woman must evaluate her strengths and weakness with a realistic eye, so that she is well aware of her place in the sun.

A girl pampered by her parents will not be able to face the world. At the same time, a woman needs to talk and show her strengths at the workplace. A silent worker in the name of being righteous works wonders for others. There is no harm in claiming credit for what you have done. Highlight your strengths and dilute your weaknesses. You will be able to do so only when you know about them.

Self-awareness means being aware about your self-worth. Lot of people around us love to demoralise us or play with our confidence. Many superiors would use demotivating language in the name of giving constructive feedback. An emotionally self-aware woman would be able to differentiate between honest, valid feedback and deprecating, jealous feedback.

Assess your self-worth yourself. If you feel confident, you act confident and you don’t empower others to play with your self-worth.

I met a young mother who was working as an administrative assistant. She said “No one in my family ever expected me to study for a lucrative career. Even I did not expect much from myself as no one else did”. She never tried to assess her own potential as she only believed in what others wanted her to believe.

Self-Management: To be emotionally intelligent, a woman must be good at regulating her habits, behaviour and value system. Women tend to go overboard with their emotions sometimes. If a man cries during an interview (Thank You Kapil Dev), he is considered human, but if a woman does so, she is termed weak.

We need to be honest with our emotions but regulate their expression. It is prudent to control our impulsive responses in formal work environment.

Though woman are adaptive to changing situations and overcoming obstacles. I witness an unwelcoming change these days. Millennia’s get upset when they don’t get their way. Adaptability doesn’t come easy to them.

Self-Management includes a drive to achieve excellence in the chosen area of interest with readiness to seize opportunities.

An emotionally intelligent woman is balanced. She doesn’t shy away from starting conversation or blowing a whistle.

She would be ready to go to unimaginable lengths to prove her presence under the sun.

When I spoke to start up enthusiast Sweta Mangal who launched ambulance services in many states through Ziqitza Healthcare, she shared her experience.

“I started the venture with three of my friends when a personal tragedy made us realize the need. I have worked as CEO of the company for eight years. Then I stepped down from day to day responsibilities as I became a mother.” She has just launched a medical app called MUrgency to facilitate medical services online. The sheer detachment from one role and a mature transition into another speaks volumes about the emotional intelligence of this passionate woman.

If a woman is emotional and academically intelligent, it is a half battle won. To win the full battle, to enhance personal happiness and professional success, we must hone our emotional intelligence by becoming more aware about ourselves.

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I am an Author, Entrepreneur, Motivational Speaker, Parenting expert based in Mumbai. Having written Bestsellers like Don’t Raise Your Children, Raise Yourself (Amazon Bestseller), Why Women Are What They Are, Come On! Get Set Go

I am running Life Lemonade which offers unique Training Programs on Life Transformation, High Performance Leadership, Women Issues and Parenting.

Connect with me on Linkedin, Twitter @drswatilodha Facebook

Also read my best articles here!

Emotional Intelligence: A gift from Parents to Children

When Daniel Goleman coined the term ‘Emotional Intelligence’ it was used for individuals, chiefly leaders to check whether they were emotionally intelligent and to work on the shortcomings.

Out of the five core ingredients of Emotional Intelligence – self awareness, self regulation, motivation, empathy and social skills, leaders need first three with respect to themselves while they need last two with respect to other people in their lives.

Parents need to develop theses five qualities so that their children learn them subtly. The best way for parents to raise emotionally intelligent kids is to practice these five skills and share the experiences with their children.

1. Self Awareness: It refers to knowing what works for you, what drives you and what puts you off or hampers your productivity / creativity.

I am a person who loves to plan and work in an organised manner. Last minute hassles make me tense while my husband works in complete chaos and finishes everything at the last second. (He starts in the last minute!)

We both are aware of our strikingly different ways of performing. We both achieve excellent results using two extremely diverse ways of executing.

Our daughter has observed both of us and we have prompted her to be aware of what works for her. She tells me that she is very organised academically while she follows a chaotic way of practicing when it comes to her music sessions.

I am sure a deeper self awareness will dawn on her with time.

2. Self Regulation: It refers to controlling our disruptive impulses and checking our behavior in responsible positions.

If we can control our urge to scream when a team member messes up the presentation, if we can stop our eyes from welling up when our children break our trust, we show our strengths and hide our weakness.

It is not only important for children to learn not to do what they impulsively want to do but it is also equally important for them to do what they do not want to do in spite of knowing its importance. If they don’t like to practice Math or coding, they must be subtly pushed to do “deep practice.”

3. Motivation: Parents should know what ignites their passion and happiness level apart from money and popularity.

The things that drive our passion apart from monetizing and gaining fame, define us as people and change makers.

I was speaking at a NEN E Leader Workshop recently as a volunteer resource person for management students. Working with them for a day charged me, meeting other like minded people made me happy.

I shared the experience with my daughter to make her understand the importance of self motivation that ignites your creative spots.

4. Empathy: Raising a child who is empathetic is quite difficult if the parents are not empathetic. When we are considerate towards how others feel, when we simply affirm – I know how you feel, it gives an emotional cushion to the concerned person. Our empathy towards our staff members, our team members, our friends teach valuable lessons to our children.

They naturally become more accommodating with their peers giving them benefit of doubt in trying situations.

5. Social Skills: Having numerous friends and followers on social networking sites is quite different from having real friends / supporters who would stand by you for a cause or in hours of need.

If our social skills can help us mobilize people for supporting a cause, if we can garner their skilled support without paying them, it shows that people believe in us and care for us. If our children can observe our social skills which bring change, they learn the importance of valuing relationships and investing time to nurture friendly bonds in real world.

It is important for us to give them a honest perspective of friendships and collaborations. They seem to be happy as if they have made a great achievement when they get likes on Instagram pics or Facebook statuses. We need to make them realise that real social skills go far beyond clicking the like button.

A Parent practicing emotional intelligence tools can certainly become an emotionally intelligent leader. As a bonus, he/she can raise emotionally intelligent kids.

 

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Dr. Swati Lodha is an Author, Entrepreneur, Motivational Speaker, Parenting expert based in Mumbai. Having written Bestsellers like Come on get set go  &  Why Women are What they are, her book on Parenting will be published soon. Currently, she is running Life Lemonade which offers unique Training Programs on Life Transformation, High Performance Leadership, Women Issues and Parenting.

Connect with Dr. Swati Lodha on Linkedin, Twitter @drswatilodha Facebook

Also read her best articles here!

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I am not enjoying what I am doing.

BoredomYesterday, I received two calls. A young student, 8 months into his job, wanted to quit.

A young assistant professor, mother of a two year old, wanted to quit.

On asking the reason, both said, “I am not enjoying what I am doing.”

I posed a battery of questions to both:

  1. What are your expectations from a job right now vis-à-vis your competence and experience?
  2. What can you do to improve the current job?
  3. What is your definition of “enjoying”?
  4. Are you happy with your pay check?
  5. Do you have other options?
  6. Do you want to explore self employment?

To my surprise, they were both happy with their pay, had no other options and had not thought about self employment.

To my horror, they had no answer to my first three questions.

Enjoyment, Seriously?

Haven’t we started living for ‘enjoying’ only? At the top of it, we don’t know what we enjoy for long.

Can we enjoy our life the way we enjoy having an ice cream cone?

Can we enjoy every minute of our job the way we enjoy meeting our beloved?

Can we enjoy the drudgery of our daily routine the way we enjoy a short ad film?

I can see your head tilting sideways.

Does that mean our routine, our job, our life should be altered?

With patience plummeting, attention span dwindling, our sense of enjoyment has become sporadic and momentary.

Earlier, we could watch a three hour film but now, we can hold on to our attention till the popcorn bucket lasts.

We open a new tab on our laptop screens, while the previous tab is struggling to open.

A low battery sign on mobile phone is enough for us to feel like we have lost our dear most companion.

In a fickle feeling lifestyle, our enjoyment quotient changes at the speed of light. A good discounted buy cheers us up while staring at our phone for a message reply for few minutes puts us off. Routine, mundane tasks at workplace suck and clicks from short trips rock,.

Don’t we need to wake up, think and write down answers to the first three questions?

  1. What are your expectations from a job right now vis-à-vis your competence and experience?

It is very important for us to be SELF AWARE. Having a correct idea about our own competence goes a long way in objectively deciding about which job to leave and when? Actually, Self Awareness helps us in taking all the crucial decisions.

  1. What can you do to improve the current job?

Our current job and current life can be largely improved by our mindset. Criticizing, comparing and complaining will never help us in our workplace or life space but proactive action would.

  1. What is your definition of “enjoying”?

I think the trouble lies in starting with a wrong premise – The purpose of my life is to enjoy. Let us change this Short – Lived, fickle premise and move on. Find concrete reasons to make life altering decisions. Boredom is not a reason enough.

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Dr. Swati Lodha is an Author, Entrepreneur, Motivational Speaker, Parenting expert based in Mumbai. Having written Bestsellers like Come on get set go  &  Why Women are What they are, her book on Parenting will be published soon. Currently, she is running Life Lemonade which offers unique Training Programs on Life Transformation, High Performance Leadership, Women Issues and Parenting.

Connect with Dr. Swati Lodha on Linkedin, Twitter @drswatilodha Facebook 

Also read her best articles here!