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Emotional intelligence is not luxury but a necessary skill; here’s why

In a webinar organised by Apeejay Stya University, Ishitaa Jain, an emotional intelligence coach, talked about the importance of being aware of our emotions

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The past two years of uncertainty and hopelessness amid the pandemic have reinforced the necessity for Emotional Intelligence (EI), said Ishitaa Jain, a certified life coach and founder, Dive ‘N’ Fly. Jain was speaking at a webinar titled “Demystifying Emotional Intelligence” organised by School of Management Sciences, Apeejay Stya University.

Addressing the audience virtually, Jain stressed, “We have two choices: Either to keep losing hope and wait for the time to pass or to rise above all that with more self-belief. We have to realise that the time is now. We have to recommit ourselves and rededicate to redesign the life that we want, reignite the passion in each one of us, reset goals and re-engage with ourselves. We have to be mindful of the present moment.”

Jain went on to explain all about EI, its components, and actionable tips to embrace it in our lives.

What is success?

Success in today’s world is a summation of Intelligence Quotient (IQ), Emotional Quotient (EQ), and Adaptability Quotient (AQ). Jain said, “Now and then, we hear someone saying that they feel lonely despite being surrounded by loved ones. This is nothing but an emotional vacuum. Why? Because we are not connected with our own selves. Emotional contagion is simply the transfer of moods from one person to another, more so from the person who is in power—that person dictates the mood of everyone around them.”

The right mindset can drive success. “The biggest asset in our world is mindset. We need to learn to control our minds. It has been proven that emotions are just like seasons—they are always in the background,” she said.

What is Emotional Intelligence?

Jain explained that we experience six basic emotions that are happiness, fear, anger, disgust, surprise, and sadness. The advanced emotions we experience are nothing but combinations of these basic emotions. The way we experience these emotions is highly subjective. A situation can evoke different emotions in a person.

Among these guilt and anticipation are the two unique emotions between which we constantly keep oscillating—one is related to a past event while the latter is related to the future. This means we are not living in the present.

Emotional intelligence is not about suppressing these emotions rather it is about bringing them to the surface, feeling them, pausing for a moment to decide the right action with the right confidence and will. EI comprises self-awareness, self-regulation, social skills, empathy, and motivation.

Jain went on to elaborate on the Six Second Model of EI. This has three basic components—know yourself, give yourself, and choose yourself. “You should know the pattern of your feelings, make a note of the triggers, and work on them. Once you know your feelings, choose the right way to respond. This is something that we can learn to manage with practice,” she emphasised.

Why can’t you control your emotions?

There are occasions when you react in a particular way even though you do not want to. That is known as an amygdala hijack. This happens when our brain shuts down IQ and EQ both. Jain advised that if you want to take charge of your emotions, you need to know the triggers for amygdala hijack.

How to embrace EI in our lives

Jain suggested, “Try to scan your body—how your body reacts to a trigger. Second, identify the layers of feeling. Look at optimism with realism. Ask yourself what will happen when you react to a situation in a particular way. Emotional intelligence is not an optional skill set but a necessity.”

Keep the following in mind:

  • I am responsible for my behaviour
  • No one can make me upset, angry, happy, etc
  • Recognising my range of choices is an excellent way to start changing my behaviour for the better

Disha Roy Choudhury is a Senior Correspondent at Apeejay Newsroom. She has worked as a journalist at different media organisations. She is also passionate about music and has participated in reality shows.

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