In this week’s Success Newsletter, I would like to invite you to take a quiz that will reveal your level of emotional intelligence (your emotional smarts) and; I offer you some strategies to become more emotionally intelligent.
First a quick update:
**** “The three most dangerous mistakes coaches and therapists make” – Listen to the interview I gave to The Coaching Show with hosts Christopher McAuliffe, MCC and Tara Padua Wise CPC about the three major mistakes made by coaches, therapists, counselors, psychologists and psychiatrists. I also reveal and explain how these mistakes can seriously harm and damage clients as well as the coach’s business. Click here: http://patrickwanis.com/3_Dangerous_Mistakes.asp
**** “Jesse James still doesn’t get it” – Jesse James says he is now deeply sorry, that he wanted to get caught and he threw away a good thing – his marriage to Sandra Bullock but Jesse James also didn’t believe that he deserved such a good thing and had no control over his compulsive desires http://patrickwanis.com/blog/2010/05/25/jesse-james-still-doesnt-get-it/
Now, let’s talk about your level of emotional intelligence and ways to raise it; how emotionally smart are you?
In last week’s Success Newsletter, I discussed emotional intelligence and its significance & relevance to your success and enjoyment of life http://patrickwanis.com/blog/emotional-intelligence/ Emotional intelligence is best summed up as your ability to be aware of what you feel and to master your ability to control what you feel so that you can get along with other people. Another key component of emotional intelligence is your ability to express your emotions, perceive and evaluate the emotions of others, and to express empathy and compassion for others.
Here is a simple quiz I have created that will help you to determine how emotionally intelligent you are. Simply respond with a “Yes” or “No” to each of the questions below.
Emotional Intelligence Quiz (Emotional IQ Test)
Generally speaking and most of the time:
1. Do you stay relaxed and composed under pressure?
2. Can you pinpoint why you are upset when you become upset?
3. Do you feel uncomfortable or become anxious in emotionally charged situations?
4. Can you clearly distinguish between when to avoid confrontation and when to stand up and speak up for yourself or a cause?
5. Do you believe that there are two sides to every question and do you try to look at them both?
6. Do you find it easy to see things from the “other person’s” point of view?
7. Can you identify negative feelings without beating yourself up?
8. Do you openly and freely admit making mistakes?
9. Do you openly and freely communicate your feelings and needs?
10. Are you generally aware of how each person in your group of friends feels about the other people in the group?
11. Do you attempt to understand your friends and family by imagining how things appear from their perspective?
12. Before criticizing somebody, do you try to imagine how you would feel if you were in their shoes?
13. Are you aware of how your behavior and actions impact and affect others?
14. When you see someone being treated unfairly or suffering, do you feel compassion or empathy for them?
15. Can you accept feedback or criticism without becoming defensive or highly emotional?
16. Are you able to identify your strengths & weaknesses and those things that you need to change and still like yourself?
17. Do you sincerely listen to other people, even if you believe that they are wrong in their arguments or beliefs?
18. Do you feel protective towards someone you see being treated unfairly or being taken advantage of?
19. Are you able to identify and control times when you feel jealous, angry, guilty or ashamed?
20. Are you able to maintain self-control and self-discipline and thus delay gratification?
The above is not a scientific test but rather a simple gauge of your level of emotional intelligence. The ideal response would be to answer ‘yes’ to every question. If you answered ‘yes’ to less than ten questions then your emotions strongly rule you; if you answered ‘yes’ to fifteen or more questions then you are well in control of your emotions and have high emotional intelligence.
Question number 20 is an interesting gauge of whether or not you can control your impulses. Robert Kiyosaki author of “Rich Dad, poor dad” says that “the ability to delay gratification is a sign of higher emotional intelligence. People who can delay gratification often lead more successful lives than those who cannot.” And in his book, “Cashflow Quadrant”, Robert Kiyosaki says “Emotional IQ is more powerful than academic IQ…and financial IQ is 90% emotional IQ.”
The key point here is that when you can properly express your emotions and control your emotions rather than the other way around, then you have greater control, satisfaction and joy in your life. Our emotions also affect our ability to make money; click here to watch the interview I gave http://patrickwanis.com/lod1/ )
Also, a study conducted in London last year with 2,000 women, found that women who were emotionally intelligent – most in touch with their feelings – experienced better sex lives. Read the study here: http://patrickwanis.com/blog/emotionally-intelligent-women-have-more-orgasms/
How to become more emotionally intelligent
There are 3 key steps to raising your level of emotional intelligence:
- Become aware of your emotions
- Learn to manage & control your emotions; release negative emotions
- Become aware and considerate of other people’s feelings; learn compassion
How to become aware of what you are feeling
Many women often complain that men have no idea of what they feel and it is true that generally speaking we men tend to think simply in terms of joy and anger; we often do not understand that our anger and irritability mask deeper feelings of failure, guilt, sadness, shame, blame, resentment, loss, helplessness, etc. We often think that someone outside of us is causing our reaction. The key is to stop and observe your emotion and identify it by asking repeatedly “What am I feeling?”
How to learn to manage and control your emotions
Awareness is the first step to all change. Once you know what you feel (anger, sadness, guilt, revenge, etc) then you can ask yourself “Why am I feeling this anger/guilt/etc? From where does this feeling come? When did I fist experience this feeling? Who taught me to act this way? What do I really want here?” The last question is the most powerful and revealing question.
How to release negative emotions
Most of our negative emotions are directed inwards (at ourselves) or outwards (at someone else.) Sometimes we don’t know to whom or to what to direct our anger and thus we become either easily triggered with explosive anger or we become deeply frustrated or depressed. For example, I have worked with clients who have experienced the loss of a loved one and only when we went deeper were we able to determine their real feelings: in one case, a lady was angry at God because she felt God had taken her husband but she was afraid to express those feelings; in another case, a man was frustrated and angry at the world for losing his job but he logically knew that being angry at the world was pointless and what he really felt was helplessness; and in another case, a man was angry at himself for the death of his daughter’s pet – he felt guilty that he didn’t respond to his daughter’s beckoning for action over her sick pet.
Of course, each situation is unique but generally speaking the process to releasing negative emotions is to
- Identify the emotion and accompanying thought and belief
- Accept that you have those emotions and beliefs (no matter how horrible they may seem)
- Seek deeper understanding about why “it” happened and move to forgiveness and compassion for yourself and others
How to become aware and considerate of other people’s feelings and learn compassion
When we stop and imagine what it feel like to be in someone else’s shoes or situation can we begin to become aware of what other people are experiencing. Compassion is when you feel the other person’s pain and try to relieve it. If no one ever did that for you then there is a good chance that you don’t know how to express compassion to others. Taking care of injured animals or adopting a pet from a shelter are two simple ways to learn compassion and to understand that that all living beings exist for their own reasons, not for our benefit as a superior species. A third way is to drop the walls and become aware of how deep your own pain is and then realize that many other people feel and suffer from the very same pain.
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I wish you the best and remind you “Believe in yourself -You deserve the best!”
Patrick Wanis Ph.D.
Celebrity Life Coach, Human Behavior & Relationship Expert & Clinical Hypnotherapist