Activities to Improve your Emotional Intelligence | Try Them Now
The notion of Intelligence is no more confined to the concept of the ability to solve problems or do good in academics; it has successfully moved beyond it and taken into regards concepts that lie beyond books. One such form of intelligence is Emotional Intelligence.
When I was new to the field, the term emotional intelligence grabbed much of my attention. C’mon who doesn’t want to be a Pro at managing emotions- a unique gift from God to us. We are the only creations of God who can express emotions (actively and through multiple channels).
So, I decided to improve my emotional intelligence and hence my emotional quotient (EQ). I came across various exercises to improve emotional intelligence and tried a few of them. And guess what? I was able to see an increase in my emotional intelligence measurement: EQ!!!
Now it is time for me to share my knowledge and exercises to improve your emotional intelligence.
There are five core components of Emotional Intelligence as suggested by Daniel Goleman are:
Each activity that is suggested below focuses on one core aspect.
(There is a surprise activity as well)
Activity 1: Self-Awareness
This worksheet of enhancing your self-awareness comes from Florida State University.
It starts with an amazing point that states: It’s hard to make changes to yourself when you aren’t sure where to start! Enhancing your self-awareness will help you figure out what your strengths are, where your EQ competency levels lie, and where you should focus your self-improvement efforts.
The worksheet lists 30 strengths or character traits that you might feel are strengths or areas for you to improve. This list includes traits like:
On one side, there is space to identify three strengths you have and on the other, there is space to identify three traits you would like to work on.
If you think of any strength or an area you’d like to improve that is not included on the list, add it in any way. Your list should be personalized to you, so add and edit what you need!
Activity 2: Self-Regulation
Be the Fog
It can be very difficult for many of us to accept criticism, especially if receiving criticism provokes strong emotions. This simple exercise will help you “be the fog” and learn how to regulate and modulate your emotions in a difficult situation.
Here’s what to do:
“Act like a fog! Imagine you are a fog. When someone throws a stone at you, you absorb that stone without throwing the stone back. This is a very easy and effective technique to use against people who keep criticizing you repeatedly.” (Skills Converged website)
For example, if someone tells you something like:
- “You just don’t get it.”
- “You are always procrastinating.”
- “You are always late.”
- “You run away from responsibilities.”
- “Yes, I just don’t get it.”
- “Yes, I am procrastinating sometimes.”
- “Yes, I was late.”
- “Yes, I just don’t take responsibility.”
By accepting these criticisms that are thrown your way (without actually taking them to the heart), you will find that you disarm the person criticizing you. To practice, ask someone you know well to criticize you at rapid speed, one after the other, and employ the fogging technique to counter it.
Activity 3: For Relationships
This worksheet is a good way to work on building your core EQ competencies and relationship skills.
The worksheet opens with the following instructions:
- Write the names of three of the most important people in your life.
- Think about what you know about each person and list two traits, hobbies, or features of each of them (e.g., someone runs marathons and tells funny jokes).
Finally, the worksheet provides a tip if you’re having trouble:
- If you had trouble listing something about the people in your life, you may want to pay more attention to those around you. Learning something unique or personal about the individuals in your life can help you maintain caring and positive relationships.
Activity 4: Developing Empathy
A major roadblock in developing empathetic skills is STRESS. The stress we experience reduces our level of empathy. Therefore, it is important to manage this stress to be empathetic and improve emotional intelligence.
Recent studies have indicated that people with emotional clarity and awareness are better at handling stress than others. Especially in the workplace, stress and burnout cause a marked degradation in our overall emotional capabilities and influence the way we respond to them.
The most helpful stress reduction method is by consciously using our senses and staying close to nature, as suggested by Bunzenmeyer. Apart from this here are some more activities for you to try
- Splash cold water on your face after a stressful encounter and get back to work after that. Along with giving a feeling of freshness, cool conditions also help us in reducing anxiety levels.
- Avoiding unhelpful habits like- caffeine intake and drug abuse, during hard times.
- Take a break from things that welcome stress and redshift your focus on activities that boost your mental and emotional well-being.
You can also use this mini-guide for a stress-free and empathetic live ahead!
Activity 5: Get Motivated
Watch a TED Talk
TED Talks are believed to be a great source of motivation. So, to work on the fifth core element of emotional intelligence all you have to do is watch this TED Talk and get motivated.
Here is a TED Talk to make your journey of boosting your emotional intelligence even better
Activity 6: Working on Emotions
Here is an interactive graphic that will help you recognize and work on your emotions. If you are looking to work on all the five components of emotional intelligence together then this is a great activity to opt for.
You can either take a screenshot and work on it or jot the steps down on a paper as you work on a given task. Enjoy!!!
Now that you have a list of fun-filled exercises to improve emotional intelligence it is time for you to try some or maybe all of them.
Don’t forget to share in the comment section below which emotional intelligence exercise did you try, that ended up enhancing your EQ.
Keep expressing… keep smiling…