Magic of Emotional Intelligence - Part 8
EQ & Self-awareness

©Arlene R. Taylor, PhD

articles2022Self-awareness involves a personal knowledge of your own character, thoughts, emotions, feelings, desires, and motives, along with a knowledge of how others view you.  

Do you know that the essential life skills of Emotional Intelligence (EQ) and self-awareness are linked hand in glove? They are linked because building EQ skills requires strong self-awareness. Although many believe they have high self-awareness, studies estimate that only one in 10-15 individuals really possesses those skills for accuracy. You cannot take steps to get out of a trap if you do not even realize you are in one.

Considering almost any hierarchy, people considered the “higher ups” are least likely to be self-aware of how others perceive them. Why? Because there are fewer individuals “above” to provide kind and helpful feedback. And those “below” may be unwilling to take the risk.

—Pay attention in the moment to what is happening both inside of you and in your environment. Imagine watching yourself from the outside, monitoring your appearance and behaviors, and noting how they affect your interactions and relationships.

—Learn to identify your emotions quickly and accurately, what likely triggered them, and what they are trying to tell you. Do they relate to your past? If so, take steps to heal and release emotional baggage.

—Be open to feedback. View their comments dispassionately. It is, after all, only their opinion. Plus, you can become more self-aware of your behaviors and how they are perceived, at least by some. There’s always something you can learn.

—Avoid “why” questions (e.g., why did I say or do that?) which lead to rationalization. Instead, ask “what” questions, e.g., what steps must I take to avoid these less-than-desirable behaviors in the future?

—Hang out with self-aware individuals; they can help you sharpen your skills. Treat others as you would prefer to be treated. What you circulate into the environment often comes back to you.

Building Self-awareness skills can help you build Emotional Intelligence skills—worth 80 percent of your overall success in life. These two essential life skills are linked, hand in glove.