Spencer Nash,Financial Services Industry
Participant in Six Seconds’ London EQ Certification Course
Emotional Intelligence? Lots of people talked about it. There were books on it and the web was brimming with hints, tips, articles and forums. I just hadn’t been able to make the connection. Not fully anyway.
I’d read the odd article, and promised myself I’d read the top selling books (when I next had time), but that was about as far as my knowledge of Emotional Intelligence went.
That was back in February 2013.
Then one day, whilst researching personal development ideas, I came across Six Seconds… They were running an Emotional Intelligence practitioner course in London that May, so I decided to book myself on it to really learn what this was all about.
It only took one week to ignite the change… One fabulous, insightful, fun and, more importantly, educational week in a hotel conference room in South West London.
The course was a mix of practical, clever, thought provoking, and at times crazy (think water pistols), talks and exercises that resulted in what I still describe to people today as one of the most formative and inspiring courses I have ever attended in my 24 year professional career.
Leaving the course I found myself looking at the way I interacted with others, from colleagues, to friends to my own children in a completely different way.
Since then, I have continued to work at being a more Emotionally Intelligent person. I’m not always nice, I’m not always nasty, but I am able to recognize my emotions, to self diagnose and make a choice about what to do next. I still get it wrong, but that’s the point of being a practitioner to me; keep practicing!
So what’s the practical difference this has made to my life..?
At home, I am far more aware of how my emotions are coming into play when interacting with my wife and kids… I’m also far more aware of how theirs are too.. It’s not always a science, often it feels more like an art, but the application of the knowledge I’ve gained is always there, supporting and encouraging me.
As a family we’re very fortunate; our lives together have always been positive, open and loving. I do believe however that we are now an even more positive, open and loving family unit that has intelligent recognition, selection and use of emotions at its heart. We still get things wrong – we’re people – but our Emotional Intelligence is growing and will continue to do so.
What about in my workplace?
I’ve found work to be more of a challenge.. Not because other folks make it hard for me but because I’ve spent twenty years working in the Corporate world and I’ve become pretty good at putting on my mask before arriving at the office.. Talk about feelings? Think about feelings? Make feelings part of the normal agenda? That was a new thing for me… And I must admit, still requires focus.
When I do focus, I notice how many of my colleagues have masks too. I suppose it’s almost intuitive for many.
So how do I “de-mask” the workplace?
By bringing emotions to the table; both formally and informally. I make sure I ask staff and colleagues how they’re feeling and I make sure I listen to what they tell me. I also make sure I tell them how I’m feeling, why I believe I’m feeling the way I do and what I’m going to do about it (which sometimes is nothing). When running project teams I ensure our meeting agendas include an item which asks round the table “how’s everyone feeling?” Simple steps likes this really help to break down barriers, communicate in a stronger and more open way, and ultimately empower us all to deliver better results – which, let’s be honest, is the main thing our employers want.
To me, practicing EQ doesn’t need to be something I just do at home, just at work or just by myself. Rather I weave it into every part of my life and I see the results every day.
More information on upcoming certification courses at: www.6seconds.org/events/