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1.5.2015

18BehaviorsofEmotionallyIntelligentPeople|TIME

18BehaviorsofEmotionallyIntelligent

People

April 28, 2015

Emotionalintelligenceisahugedriver

ofsuccess

April 28, 2015 Emotionalintelligenceisahugedriver ofsuccess Getty Images Whenemotionalintelligence(EQ)first

Getty Images

Emotionalintelligenceisahugedriver ofsuccess Getty Images Whenemotionalintelligence(EQ)first

Whenemotionalintelligence(EQ)first appearedtothemasses,itservedasthe missinglinkinapeculiarfinding:people withaverageIQsoutperformthosewith

thehighestIQs70percentofthetime.

Thisanomalythrewamassivewrenchinto

thebroadlyheldassumptionthatIQwasthesolesourceofsuccess.

Decadesofresearchnowpointtoemotionalintelligenceasbeingthecriticalfactorthat

setsstarperformersapartfromtherestofthepack.Theconnectionissostrongthat90

percentoftopperformershavehighemotionalintelligence.

Emotionalintelligenceisthe“something”ineachofusthatisabitintangible.Itaffects

howwemanagebehavior,navigatesocialcomplexities,andmakepersonaldecisionsto

achievepositiveresults.

DespitethesignificanceofEQ,itsintangiblenaturemakesitdifficulttomeasureandto knowwhattodotoimproveitifyou’relacking.Youcanalwaystakeascientifically

validatedtest,suchastheonethatcomeswiththeEmotionalIntelligence2.0book,but

unfortunately,mostsuchtestsaren’tfree.So,I’veanalyzedthedatafromthemillion­

pluspeopleTalentSmarthastestedinordertoidentifythebehaviorsthatarethe

hallmarksofahighEQ.WhatfollowsaresuresignsthatyouhaveahighEQ.

You have a robust emotional vocabulary.

Allpeopleexperienceemotions,butitisaselectfewwhocanaccuratelyidentifythemas

theyoccur.Ourresearchshowsthatonly36percentofpeoplecandothis,whichis

problematicbecauseunlabeledemotionsoftengomisunderstood,whichleadsto

irrationalchoicesandcounterproductiveactions.

PeoplewithhighEQsmastertheiremotionsbecausetheyunderstandthem,andtheyuse

anextensivevocabularyoffeelingstodoso.Whilemanypeoplemightdescribe

themselvesassimplyfeeling“bad,”emotionallyintelligentpeoplecanpinpointwhether

theyfeel“irritable,”“frustrated,”“downtrodden,”or“anxious.”Themorespecificyour

wordchoice,thebetterinsightyouhaveintoexactlyhowyouarefeeling,whatcausedit,

andwhatyoushoulddoaboutit.

You’re curious about people.

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18BehaviorsofEmotionallyIntelligentPeople|TIME

Itdoesn’tmatterifthey’reintrovertedorextroverted,emotionallyintelligentpeopleare

curiousabouteveryonearoundthem.Thiscuriosityistheproductofempathy,oneofthe

mostsignificantgatewaystoahighEQ.Themoreyoucareaboutotherpeopleandwhat

they’regoingthrough,themorecuriosityyou’regoingtohaveaboutthem.

You embrace change.

Emotionallyintelligentpeopleareflexibleandareconstantlyadapting.Theyknowthat

fearofchangeisparalyzingandamajorthreattotheirsuccessandhappiness.Theylook

forchangethatislurkingjustaroundthecorner,andtheyformaplanofactionshould

thesechangesoccur.

You know your strengths and weaknesses.

Emotionallyintelligentpeopledon’tjustunderstandemotions;theyknowwhatthey’re

goodatandwhatthey’reterribleat.Theyalsoknowwhopushestheirbuttonsandthe

environments(bothsituationsandpeople)thatenablethemtosucceed.HavingahighEQ

meansyouknowyourstrengthsandhowtoleanintoandusethemtoyourfulladvantage

whilekeepingyourweaknessesfromholdingyouback.

5 HORRIBLE HABITS YOU NEED TO STOP RIGHT NOW

5 HORRIBLE HABITS YOU NEED TO STOP RIGHT NOW Chris Pecoraro—Getty Images Do Not Email First

Chris Pecoraro—Getty Images

Do Not Email First Thing in the Morning or Last Thing at Night “The former scrambles your priorities and all your plans for the day and the latter just gives you insomnia,” says Ferriss, who insists “email can wait until 10am” or after you check off at least one substantive to-do list item.

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You’re a good judge of character.

Muchofemotionalintelligencecomesdowntosocialawareness;theabilitytoreadother

people,knowwhatthey’reabout,andunderstandwhatthey’regoingthrough.Overtime,

thisskillmakesyouanexceptionaljudgeofcharacter.Peoplearenomysterytoyou.You

knowwhatthey’reallaboutandunderstandtheirmotivations,eventhosethatliehidden

beneaththesurface.

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18BehaviorsofEmotionallyIntelligentPeople|TIME

You are difficult to offend.

Ifyouhaveafirmgraspofwhoyouare,it’sdifficultforsomeonetosayordosomething

thatgetsyourgoat.Emotionallyintelligentpeopleareself­confidentandopen­minded,

whichcreatesaprettythickskin.Youmayevenpokefunatyourselforletotherpeople

makejokesaboutyoubecauseyouareabletomentallydrawthelinebetweenhumorand

degradation.

You know how to say no (to yourself and others).

Emotionalintelligencemeansknowinghowtoexertself­control.Youdelaygratification

andavoidimpulsiveaction.ResearchconductedattheUniversityofCalifornia,San

Francisco,showsthatthemoredifficultythatyouhavesayingno,themorelikelyyouare

toexperiencestress,burnout,andevendepression.Sayingnoisamajorself­control

challengeformanypeople,but“No”isapowerfulwordthatyoushouldunafraidto

wield.Whenit’stimetosayno,emotionallyintelligentpeopleavoidphrasessuchas“I

don’tthinkIcan”or“I’mnotcertain.”Sayingnotoanewcommitmenthonorsyour

existingcommitmentsandgivesyoutheopportunitytosuccessfullyfulfillthem.

You let go of mistakes.

Emotionallyintelligentpeopledistancethemselvesfromtheirmistakes,butdoso

withoutforgettingthem.Bykeepingtheirmistakesatasafedistance,yetstillhandy

enoughtoreferto,theyareabletoadaptandadjustforfuturesuccess.Ittakesrefined

self­awarenesstowalkthistightropebetweendwellingandremembering.Dwellingtoo

longonyourmistakesmakesyouanxiousandgunshy,whileforgettingaboutthem

completelymakesyouboundtorepeatthem.Thekeytobalanceliesinyourabilityto

transformfailuresintonuggetsofimprovement.Thiscreatesthetendencytogetright

backupeverytimeyoufalldown.

You give and expect nothing in return.

Whensomeonegivesyousomethingspontaneously,withoutexpectinganythingin

return,thisleavesapowerfulimpression.Forexample,youmighthaveaninteresting

conversationwithsomeoneaboutabook,andwhenyouseethemagainamonthlater,

youshowupwiththebookinhand.Emotionallyintelligentpeoplebuildstrong

relationshipsbecausetheyareconstantlythinkingaboutothers.

You don’t hold grudges.

Thenegativeemotionsthatcomewithholdingontoagrudgeareactuallyastress

response.Justthinkingabouttheeventsendsyourbodyintofight­or­flightmode,a

survivalmechanismthatforcesyoutostandupandfightorrunforthehillswhenfaced

withathreat.Whenthethreatisimminent,thisreactionisessentialtoyoursurvival,but

whenthethreatisancienthistory,holdingontothatstresswreakshavoconyourbody

andcanhavedevastatinghealthconsequencesovertime.Infact,researchersatEmory

Universityhaveshownthatholdingontostresscontributestohighbloodpressureand

heartdisease.Holdingontoagrudgemeansyou’reholdingontostress,andemotionally

intelligentpeopleknowtoavoidthisatallcosts.Lettinggoofagrudgenotonlymakes

youfeelbetternowbutcanalsoimproveyourhealth.

You neutralize toxic people.

Dealingwithdifficultpeopleisfrustratingandexhaustingformost.Buthigh­EQ

individualscontroltheirinteractionswithtoxicpeoplebykeepingtheirfeelingsincheck.

Whentheyneedtoconfrontatoxicperson,theyapproachthesituationrationally.They

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identifytheirownemotionsanddon’tallowangerorfrustrationtofuelthechaos.They

alsoconsiderthedifficultperson’sstandpointandareabletofindsolutionsandcommon

ground.Evenwhenthingscompletelyderail,emotionallyintelligentpeopleareableto

takethetoxicpersonwithagrainofsalttoavoidlettinghimorherbringthemdown.

You don’t seek perfection.

Emotionallyintelligentpeoplewon’tsetperfectionastheirtargetbecausetheyknowthat

itdoesn’texist.Humanbeings,byourverynature,arefallible.Whenperfectionisyour

goal,you’realwaysleftwithanaggingsenseoffailurethatmakesyouwanttogiveupor

reduceyoureffort.Youendupspendingtimelamentingwhatyoufailedtoaccomplish

andshouldhavedonedifferentlyinsteadofmovingforward,excitedaboutwhatyou’ve

achievedandwhatyouwillaccomplishinthefuture.

You appreciate what you have.

Takingtimetocontemplatewhatyou’regratefulforisn’tmerelytherightthingtodo;it

alsoimprovesyourmoodbyreducingthestresshormonecortisol(insomecasesby23

percent).ResearchconductedattheUniversityofCalifornia,Davis,foundthatpeople

whoworkdailytocultivateanattitudeofgratitudeexperienceimprovedmood,energy,

andphysicalwell­being.It’slikelythatlowerlevelsofcortisolplayamajorroleinthis.

You disconnect.

TakingregulartimeoffthegridisasignofahighEQbecauseithelpsyoutokeepyour stressundercontrolandtoliveinthemoment.Whenyoumakeyourselfavailabletoyour

work24/7,youexposeyourselftoaconstantbarrageofstressors.Forcingyourself

offlineandeven–gulp!–turningoffyourphonegivesyourbodyandmindabreak. Studieshaveshownthatsomethingassimpleasanemailbreakcanlowerstresslevels. Technologyenablesconstantcommunicationandtheexpectationthatyoushouldbe

available24/7.Itisextremelydifficulttoenjoyastress­freemomentoutsideofwork

whenanemailwiththepowertobringyourthinking(read:stressing)backtoworkcan

dropontoyourphoneatanymoment.

You limit your caffeine intake.

Drinkingexcessiveamountsofcaffeinetriggersthereleaseofadrenaline,whichisthe

primarysourceofafight­or­flightresponse.Thefight­or­flightmechanismsidesteps

rationalthinkinginfavorofafasterresponsetoensuresurvival.Thisisgreatwhenabear

ischasingyou,butnotsogreatwhenyou’rerespondingtoacurtemail.Whencaffeine

putsyourbrainandbodyintothishyper­arousedstateofstress,youremotionsoverrun

yourbehavior.Caffeine’slonghalf­lifeensuresyoustaythiswayasittakesitssweettime

workingitswayoutofyourbody.High­EQindividualsknowthatcaffeineistrouble,and

theydon’tletitgetthebetterofthem.

You get enough sleep.

It’sdifficulttooverstatetheimportanceofsleeptoincreasingyouremotionalintelligence

andmanagingyourstresslevels.Whenyousleep,yourbrainliterallyrecharges,shuffling

throughtheday’smemoriesandstoringordiscardingthem(whichcausesdreams)sothat

youwakeupalertandclearheaded.High­EQindividualsknowthattheirself­control,

attention,andmemoryareallreducedwhentheydon’tgetenough–ortherightkind–of

sleep.So,theymakesleepatoppriority.

You stop negative self-talk in its tracks.

Themoreyouruminateonnegativethoughts,themorepoweryougivethem.Mostof

ournegativethoughtsarejustthat–thoughts,notfacts.Whenitfeelslikesomething

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18BehaviorsofEmotionallyIntelligentPeople|TIME

alwaysorneverhappens,thisisjustyourbrain’snaturaltendencytoperceivethreats

(inflatingthefrequencyorseverityofanevent).Emotionallyintelligentpeopleseparate

theirthoughtsfromthefactsinordertoescapethecycleofnegativityandmovetowarda

positive,newoutlook.

You won’t let anyone limit your joy.

Whenyoursenseofpleasureandsatisfactionarederivedfromtheopinionsofother

people,youarenolongerthemasterofyourownhappiness.Whenemotionally

intelligentpeoplefeelgoodaboutsomethingthey’vedone,theywon’tletanyone’s

opinionsorsnideremarkstakethatawayfromthem.Whileit’simpossibletoturnoff

yourreactionstowhatothersthink,youdon’thavetocompareyourselftoothers,and

youcanalwaystakepeople’sopinionswithagrainofsalt.Thatway,nomatterwhatother

peoplearethinkingordoing,yourself­worthcomesfromwithin.

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toentrepreneursandbusinessowners.Thearticleabovewasoriginallypublishedat

©2015TimeInc.Allrightsreserved.