Contemplate your behaviors

By  Tomas Chamorro-Premuzic via blogs.hbr.org   Article

Can You Really Improve Your Emotional Intelligence?

“Studies have shown that a high emotional quotient (or EQ) boosts career successentrepreneurial potential, leadership talent,healthrelationship satisfactionhumor, and happiness. …

… if you’ve been told you need to keep your temper under control, show more empathy for others, or be a better listener, what are the odds you can really do it? … Nearly 3,000 scientific articles have been published on EQ …

1. Your level of EQ is firm, but not rigid. Our ability to identify and manage our own and others’ emotions is fairly stable over time …. realistically, long-term improvements will require a great deal of dedication and guidance. …  One good piece of news is that EQ tends to increase with age, even without deliberate interventions. That’s the technical way to say that (most people) mature with age.

2. Good coaching programs do work. … While no program can get someone from 0 to 100%, a well-designed coaching intervention can easily achieve improvements of 25%. … the most coachable element of EQ is interpersonal skills — with average short-term improvements of 50%. …

3) But you can only improve if you get accurate feedback. … Most of us are generally unaware of how others see us — and this especially true for managers. As noted , ‘it is remarkable how many smart, highly motivated, and apparently responsible people rarely pause to contemplate their own behaviors.’

4) Some techniques (and coaches) are more competent than others. … The most effective coaching techniques fall under the realm of cognitive-behavioral therapy. Attempts to enhance psychological flexibility — the ability to accept and deal with (as opposed to avoid) unpleasant situations — are also effective. The most popular (not necessarily the most effective) methods are relaxation and meditation. Contrary to popular belief, interventions designed to enhance self-esteem or confidence are rarely effective and often counterproductive.”

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