Emotional intelligence is the ability to identify and manage one’s own emotions, as well as the emotions of others. In the class, we spent several week discussing and learning about emotional intelligence and how it affects us in our daily as well as professional lives. The first emotional intelligence activity we did was an emotional intelligence self-assessment that portrayed our emotional intelligence scores based on a few simple questions about ourselves and our interactions. It split emotional intelligence into four dimensions: self-awareness, self-management, social awareness, and relationship management. Self-awareness is understanding and noticing your own emotions while being able to control your emotions is self-management. Social awareness is the ability to recognize and understand other’s emotions and relationship management is using the awareness of our emotions and other’s emotions to manage interactions. My scores were above average in all the categories with relationship management being the lowest score at 29. My highest score was in social awareness. My relationship management is lower because I struggle with sharing my emotions to others. I tend to keep my personal feelings to myself rather than express it to others; however, my social awareness is high because I catch on to how others are feeling very easily through their tone, posture, facial expression, and speech. I enjoy helping others and interacting with them as long as I keep my personal emotions to myself. Even though it is indeed lower than my other scores, relationship management is still higher than the average score. I definitely need to work on expressing my thoughts and emotions, and recently it has improved slightly thanks to some close friends who have also noticed the situation and have been trying to get me to open up a bit. It’s actually kind of been relieving and less stressful since I have someone to talk to and help me out.
Another activity I really enjoyed was the small group discussion on social awareness revolving around negative emotions. The Ted talk and article by Susan David really left an impression on me. It made me realize that keeping my negative emotions in was causing more harm than good. I thought that by avoiding them rather than confronting situations, I would let it pass and not worry about them; however, I realized after some reflection, it was more damaging. The negative emotions were causing stress and discomfort that I didn’t really realize. After a discussion with a friend, I came to the conclusion that avoiding negative emotions was causing avoidable breakdowns. I also discovered I should talk about my feelings to someone rather than writing it down. I tried writing and venting once, and it made me more upset than I was originally. David also further explained that negative emotions are always more prominent than happier ones. It is indeed much easier to bring our moods down from 100% happy to an instant 0% whereas it is much more difficult to bring our sad moods up to happier mood. Therefore, even if it is harder to stay happy, we should embrace the positivity as much as we can. We control our emotions. Our emotions do not control us. Due to the Ted talk, article, and small discussion, I had a deeper understanding about myself as well as the significance of expressing.
Lastly, my favorite activity on emotional intelligence is when we had a guest speaker, Sandra Mayta, come speak about stress management. I think the talk was very helpful in giving me ideas to be healthier and less stressed dominated. It helped me realize how unhealthy I am as an individual because I never eat breakfast or lunch, rarely exercise, and only drink 1 water bottle a week. I tend to replace my water with other fluids and liquids such as soda or juices, which have a small amount of water already in it. My activity level has not been that bad because I used to play tennis in high school and college is keeping me speed walking in order to get to class. Mayta’s ideas and different categories of destressing is very new and seems interesting to try such as spiritual yoga. I am not very good at yoga, so I might just start off with morning stretches. I started to eat breakfast on days I don’t wake up to late. I made a deal with my boyfriend to drink at least one bottle a day and we shall see if I can gradually increase it from there.
Overall, the topic of emotional intelligence has provided me with methods and goals for myself to improve my health and interactions. I have learned more about myself and my good as well as bad habits. I hope to take my newly learned content and apply it to myself and others in the future especially in the real-world professional work force. I want to control my emotions and not let them control me. I will set goals to improve myself, so ultimately, I can be the best version of myself I can be. I appreciate learning about emotional intelligence and how it affects individuals and society as more and more modern advancements are created and generations continue to rely more on the internet. Hopefully, today’s generations can make use of emotional intelligence to solve the emotional outbursts as time continues to change future generations to come.