Head and heartThere has been a lot of buzz lately about the importance of emotional intelligence (EI). In a recent issue of Inc., John Rampton quotes an article from Psychology Today:

“Emotional intelligence is the ability to identify and manage your own emotions and the emotions of others.” This usually involves:

1. Emotional awareness, which includes the ability to identify your own emotions as well as those of others;

2. The ability to harness emotions and apply them to tasks such as problem solving;

3. The ability to manage your emotions, such as being able to calm down when you’re upset.”

That is all well and good, but leaves at least some of us wondering if there might be a way to improve our emotional intelligence quotient; so that we ourselves can benefit from its gifts.

Fortunately John suggests 10 qualities that we can work on to improve our emotional intelligence. Among my favorites (and frankly the ones I need the most) are:

  1. They are not perfectionists. (OY!)
  2. They know how to balance work and play. (Double OY!)
  3. The focus on the positive. (Doing pretty well there.)
  4. They set boundaries. (Still working on it.)

I particular like what the author shares about setting boundaries:

While people with high EI may seem like pushovers because of their politeness and compassion, they actually have the power to establish boundaries. For example, they know how to say no to others. The reason? It prevents them from getting overwhelmed, burned out, and stressed because they have too many commitments.

To check out the rest of the list and what John has to say about each item, click here.