Jayne Morrison, regional director of Six Seconds Middle East and Africa, a non-profit organisation that supports EQ in schools, businesses and families around the world, including the UAE, explains that having a higher EQ makes us more self-aware, which in turn makes us more adept at having fulfilling relationships with others.
“We all have emotions, whether we’re the manager, the employee, the friend or the parents,” she says. “Thoughts, feelings and actions are inextricably intertwined – each affects the other. People with higher EQs have more meaningful relationships because they have a greater sense of self-awareness, they understand their emotions and how these drive their thoughts and behaviours, and are mindful of how these affect others. People with higher EQs also make intentional choices in their interactions with others, using consequential thinking before taking action instead of drifting through life on autopilot.”
Tips on how to increase your EQ
Helen Maffini, an educational consultant from Australia who specialises in EQ and has lived and worked in the UAE:
- Develop self-awareness and see yourself as others do. You can do this by taking time to reflect each day on how you acted and reacted and how those around you did. Becoming aware allows you to take a step towards managing your emotions.
- Learn to read facial expressions and body language. This is a skill you can acquire with practice. This will help you tune into people’s feelings and moods and really hear what is behind their words.
- Learn to manage stress. Deep breathing is one effective way to manage stressful situations. Learn to breathe deeply and you will be amazed at how quickly you can change your emotions.