Practical Emotional Intelligence Examples

Emotional intelligence, or EI, involves understanding your emotions and the emotions of the people around you. Emotional awareness can help in many different situations at home, at school, and at work.

EI occurs on a number of levels. It involves the ability to recognize, understand, and manage your own emotions, and to be able to read the emotions of others in order to deal with them in an appropriate manner.

Our emotions are important in relationships, of course, but having empathy and understanding for others greases the wheels of communication and closeness. An emotionally intelligent person is easier to deal with than one lacking in EI for a number of reasons. Those with high EI are good at:

  • Managing difficult situations
  • Expressing themselves clearly and honestly
  • Controlling their emotions
  • Gaining respect from others, who admire their cool head and control
  • Influencing other people, such as in a leadership position because they lead by example
  • Working well as a team
  • Listening
  • Supporting

There are a number of example that demonstrate a person with high EI in action. By assessing yourself and looking at effective examples, you can boost your own EI and enjoy better success in your professional and personal relationships.

1. Anger Management

Anger management is a key skill that will help all your relationships. Note the word management, not suppression. Feeling angry is only natural. It’s how you express, or choose not to express, your anger that is crucial.

Examples of EI so anger does not run away with you include:

  • Counting to ten.
  • Telling the person you need some time to think and you will speak to them later.
  • Focusing on long, deep breathing so your breath doesn’t come in gasps and you can stay relaxed.
  • Using meditation to calm yourself.
  • Using visualization. Think of your favorite calming view.
  • Seeing the situation from the other person’s viewpoint.
  • Focusing on solving the problem in a practical way, rather than letting emotions get the better of you.

2. Understanding Body Language

Sometimes what is not said is as important as what is spoken. Body language can speak volumes, whether you realize it or not. Standing with your arms folded or with your body turned to the side is very off-putting to people and distances you from them. If you see someone standing like that when you are speaking to them, then they are not engaging with you on a deeper level.

By reading their body language and facial expressions, you can start to understand what others are really thinking and feeling, which can help with better communication and deal making.

A few things to watch out for include:

  • Hands on hips, fists clenched, red face = anger
  • Relaxed eye contact, smiling, sitting in a comfortable way = happy
  • Pacing, nail biting, tapping = anxiety
  • Eyes, face and posture all drooping = sadness

3. Dealing with Difficult People

Sooner or later, you are going to have to deal with difficult people. EI can help you navigate stormy waters successfully. Here are a few strategies for success you can try.

  • Know your communication style – is it relaxed and informal or uptight and formal?
  • Know their communication style and adapt yours to theirs.
  • Don’t jump to conclusions – get all the facts.
  • Be honest no matter what.
  • Don’t play the blame game. Pointing fingers is rarely helpful and could cause you to lose face even though you might not be the one who is in the wrong.
  • Don’t run on empty. Take care of your emotional and physical needs first. Eat right, take bathroom breaks, have a drink of water or beverage, and then tackle the issue.

Use these examples and others of good EI, and see what a difference they can make to all your relationships.

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