During the 70s, psychologist Paul Eckman concluded 6 basic emotions: happiness, sadness, fear, disgust, anger and surprise, as stated by Kendry Cherry for Verywell Mind.
“The choices we make, the actions we take, and the perceptions we have are all influenced by the emotions we are experiencing at any given moment,” explained Cherry.
They also play a crucial role in every aspect of life. Although no emotion is bad, certain emotional states can sometimes lead to dysfunctional or abrasive behavior that some may want to avoid.
Awareness is key. For instance, being aware of the words you choose to express yourself during an interaction can be a great practice of emotional intelligence and an opportunity to foster result-driven communication.
At times we can give others power to dictate how we feel. However, understanding our own emotional intelligence is paramount. Passing this same knowledge to our children will be essential in promoting lives centered around wellness.
Diving Into Emotional Intelligence
According to Olivier Serrat in “Understanding and developing emotional intelligence,” emotional intelligence describes the ability, capacity, skill, or self-perceived ability to identify, assess, and manage the emotions of one’s self, of others, and of groups.
People who possess a high degree of emotional intelligence tend to know themselves very well and are also able to sense the emotions of others.
Dr. Margaret Paul says that “when you realize that your feelings are your responsibility, you can move out of emotional dependency. This will make a huge difference within you and with all of your relationships.”
A study by Bar-On reports a correlation between total emotional intelligence scores and job satisfaction in a sample of 314 participants (mainly salespersons, teachers, college students, and nurses). This explains that there is indeed a valuable link that exists between emotional intelligence and employee fulfillment and potential career growth.
In addition, giving support and respecting others during difficult times implies a trace of maturity that helps to perceive emotions, thoughts, and actions as our own.
It certainly takes time to fully own and improve our emotional intelligence. However, small steps can be taken. For example, instead of saying, “you made me angry,” a better choice may be to say “I feel angry as a result of this situation.”
Practicing Being Emotionally Responsible
- Be in charge of the way that you communicate your feelings and emotions.
- Care about the bonds that you share with other people.
- Clearly express your wishes and intentions.
- Stabilize clear limits according to what you want and what you receive.
- Foster positive relationships.
You can’t change an emotion but you can modify the way you express it towards significant ones, and that can make all the difference.