How to build happy, satisfying and harmonious relationships with those around us? Whether it is in our interactions with our life partner, children, family, friends or in work relationships, emotional intelligence allows us to maintain good relations with the people we are around.
The intelligence of the heart is that which refers to the emotions. It is often referred to as emotional intelligence. On the relational level, we can live happy moments, but also tensions or misunderstanding, for example. A person with a strong emotional intelligence is able to discern and understand his or her own emotions and those of others. He is also able to use this knowledge to manage the emotions that are born in him and to deal with delicate situations in his relationships with others. But what exactly is emotional intelligence needed to improve our contact with others?
BEING ATTENTIVE TO ONESELF
Emotional intelligence is present in two areas of our lives, the first being the personal level. This level is the starting point for entering into relationships with others, as it is necessary to know yourself first in order to hope to build strong bonds with others. Emotional intelligence, on the level of the Self, is the ability to identify your emotions, to understand them (self-awareness) and to manage them (self-management). This touches on the individual's personal competence. Let us note that the so-called negative emotions are not really negative when we consider that they exist to alert us to something. What is important to do is to recognize them and learn how to manage them. So ask yourself:
When I feel angry, sad, bored, annoyed, am I able to clearly identify the emotion that's going on inside me? Am I also able to find out what is causing this emotion (a situation or a person)? What do I do to calm down when I identify the cause of what I am feeling? Do I know how to pull myself together?
LISTENING TO THE OTHER
The second area is the social side. It is the fact of having an awareness of others. On the one hand, the intelligence of the heart consists in being aware of the emotions of others and putting yourself in the place of the other (empathy). On the other hand, it makes you capable of knowing how your own behaviour affects others and enables you to develop ways of managing relationships with others (relationship management). We are in the field of social competence. Ask yourself:
Am I able to listen to or understand the other person? Can I recognize an emotion or know that something is wrong with the other person? Do I realize the emotional impact or influence I can have on others or that I can create in a group dynamic during interactions? Am I aware when I cause discomfort, frustration or put others on the defensive for example? Do I have the ability to connect with others by trying to get to know someone better or by managing conflict effectively? Do I express my emotions clearly and allow others to express theirs?
DEVELOP YOUR INTELLIGENCE OF THE HEART
You can develop your emotional intelligence. It can be improved because it affects skills and because skills are acquired. These abilities are the result of working on yourself and your relationships, a process that is done by asking yourself questions like the ones above, observing the physical signs of your body (to detect an emotion), being present and aware of what is happening in you and around you in the moment (mindfulness is useful here), questioning others about you (to resolve or avoid conflicts and clarify the situation), and showing empathy and caring (interest and attention given to the other). The potential is within you. The work remains to be done.
By developing our intelligence of the heart, we give ourselves the means to be successful in our social interactions and in our relationships with our loved ones. We become more efficient, we are more in control, we communicate better and this intelligence has the advantage of nourishing the human side of people. Intellect is good, but since we are not robots, we need to humanize our connections with others. Intelligence without the heart is the guarantee of unsuccessful human relationships.
"Intelligence without the intelligence of the heart is only logic and it is not much."
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(Ma qualité de vie means My quality of life in French.)
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