Key Highlights

  • Emotional Intelligence or EQ is the ability to handle internal and external emotions
  • Higher EQ leaders more able to recognize and respond to emotions of others in more productive ways

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Leaders with High EQ More Effective with Others

Emotional Intelligence (EQ) is the ability to recognize, understand and use your own emotions in positive ways.  The higher your EQ towards your own emotions, the higher your EQ with others.

Leaders with high EQ are able to more effectively communicate with others, empathize with others, overcome challenges and diffuse conflict.

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High EQ is Acquired and Practiced

Like every other skill or technique, EQ is not inherent…it must be acquired and practiced.  Here are seven habits that you might use to develop and improve your EQ to enhance your leadership qualities:

Listen Actively

  1. Listen Actively
    1. Practice listening to others, truly listening and fully engaged.
    2. No distractions while listening – no looking at your phone or multi-tasking while listening
    3. Rather than just waiting to talk yourself, fully invest your attention into what others have to say.
    4. Listening actively enables you to better understand the other person’s concerns, motivations and ideas so you can better interpret their positions and points of view.

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Acquire Patience

  1. Acquire patience
    1. Allow more time by becoming more patient when responding to situations.
    2. Give yourself and others more time to recognize and monitor your own and their emotions.
    3. By your having more patience, you’ll create a calmer environment with and for your co-workers.

Practice “Active Empathy”

  1. Empathy can be highly developed
    1. Empathy is often considered to be the number one most important leadership skill.
    2. Practice “active empathy” by “walking in someone else’s shoes.”
    3. The more you imagine how others might feel, the more you’ll understand how others operate without judging them.

Key Aspect of Communication is Body Language

  1. Pay attention to body language
    1. Some researchers say that 55% of communication is related via body language.
    2. Notice subtle behavioral body expressions (crossed arms, lack of eye contact, handwringing, etc.) that contradict and/or reinforce a person’s words.

Meditation Helps Being and Staying in Present Tense

  1. Meditation helps you be and stay in the present
    1. 15 minutes a day over days/weeks/months will enable you to understand and behave more consistently with your thoughts and feelings.
    2. Studies show a strong correlation between meditation and emotional control that helps leaders remain calmer and more rational in most situations.

Journaling Helps to Improve Self Awareness

  1. Journaling to heighten self-awareness
    1. Many leaders practice journaling on a regular basis to help them become more aware and sort out their own thoughts and feelings as well as their team members.
    2. Again, just 15 minutes a day of writing and seeing your thoughts and feelings on a page will, over time, enable you to become more insightful about yourself and others.

Work-Life Balance Helps Sustain Sense of Perspective

  1. Work-life balance
    1. Become more willing to give yourself and others a break, exercise, and the time to gain perspective.
    2. Every single thought, feeling and action does not and cannot revolve around work. Give yourself and those with whom you work and life the latitude to pursue many different experiences, people, environments and places.

Thanks to Jayson Demers writing for Success.

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Also read: What Makes Successful Leaders? Emotional Intelligence, What Agents Need to Know about Zillow’s Shift to IDX, Inman Handbook on Communicating in New Normal – Part I