6 skills for developing emotional intelligence

Emotional intelligence skills

The concept of "intelligence" does not have an unambiguous definition, but we can say that the inherent level of each person's ability to use mental operations is one of the fundamental characteristics of intelligence.

Another point of view on intelligence is related to the fact that the main attention is paid to the connection between intelligence and the psychophysiological abilities of a person to process incoming information faster or slower (with the speed parameters of response to external stimuli). The main indicator of intelligence in this approach is the time spent by a person to solve the proposed problems. For example, the classification of the level of intelligence according to Veksler gives the following distribution: 50% of the population have an average level of intelligence; 16.1% each - a good rate and a similarly low rate; 6.7% each - high intelligence and the same - the border zone; 2.2% each - very high intelligence and the same - a mental defect.

6 skills for developing emotional intelligence

The third approach is based on the assessment of generalized learning ability. However, it is known from history that many gifted people did not have a good academic performance at school (for example, the Nobel laureate W. Churchill was often punished for academic failure during his school years).

Creative people, according to psychologists, are characterized by divergent thinking, in which a "fan-shaped" search for a solution is carried out, which allows them to find a very unusual solution to a problem or offer many solutions where an ordinary person can find only one or two. An example is the work of a talented actor on a role, when, pronouncing words in the text, he places accents, pauses, demonstrates with facial expressions, and gestures various shades of his character's character in a way that others cannot.

It has long been proven that ordinary intelligence is not enough for successful survival in the modern world. It is necessary not only to qualitatively interpret the surrounding reality but also to communicate with other people. And in this case, one cannot do without a developed emotional intelligence. In this article, you will learn about the six most important skills you should train to increase your EQ.

Six styles of emotional leadership

1. Empathy

Empathy is the ability to understand or feel what another person is experiencing within the framework of their belief system, that is, the ability to put oneself in the place of another.

There are two forms of empathy: affective and cognitive. The first is the sensations and feelings we experience in response to the emotions of others. The second is the ability to identify and understand emotions. And it is this type that interests us in the context of the development of emotional intelligence. Having a clear understanding of the other person's emotions will help you interact with them correctly.

How to develop it?

Create a journal in which you record your observations of emotions, both yourself and others. Note how they react to your actions and how you respond to them. This will help you build new, more effective patterns of interaction with others.

2. Self-awareness

“Know thyself” - an inscription on the wall of the Temple of Apollo in Delphi

Self-awareness is the art of understanding oneself, one's stimuli, motives, and subsequent reactions. It is also an important part of what we call self-control. Self-awareness has an internal aspect - how we perceive ourselves; and an external - understanding of how others see us.

How to develop it?

As for the internal aspect, here you have to observe yourself, analyze your motives and actions. You can start with a SWOT analysis, which will help to identify the main strengths, weaknesses, as well as threats and opportunities. Also, you should look at yourself from the outside. And there is no better way than feedback from others. Just ask someone you know to do the same SWOT analysis of your personality.

3. Curiosity

“I have no special talents. I am just curious". - Albert Einstein

Show me a curious person who is willing to learn and improve, and I will show you a success story that is waiting in the wings. Curiosity breeds passion, which in turn breeds high productivity and motivation. This is important for the development of any kind of intelligence, especially emotional. Curiosity is the spark that will always keep you willing to understand people.

How to develop it?

Curiosity to one degree or another is inherent in all highly intelligent creatures, especially man. You just have to encourage it and give in to it. Fortunately, when it comes to studying human behavior, it is difficult to find something more interesting and close to all of us. You are just getting started.

4. Analytical thinking

If we are talking about emotional intelligence as a cognitive process, then one cannot do without developed analytical thinking skills. You will come across an extremely difficult object to understand - a person. In an old-fashioned way, it sounds like "Another's the soul of darkness". This means that you have to think a lot about what, how, and most importantly, why people do this.

How to develop it?

The key to analytical thinking is the ability to apply the laws of logic and avoid logical mistakes. Focus on this first.

5. Needs and wants

All human behavior can be placed within Maslow's pyramid of needs. The base of the pyramid is occupied by such basic things as physiological needs and safety, at the top - aesthetic and spiritual needs. An emotionally intelligent person must be able to relate certain actions of a person to different levels of needs to understand the true motivation. You should also distinguish the actual needs from the desires: the latter is aimed at realizing the former.

How to develop it?

Use the "Why Chart" technique. Take any action and ask the question "Why did the person do this?" When you get an answer, use the same question again. Sooner or later you will come to some level of Maslow's pyramid. And very often it will be the lowest one.

6. Non-verbal communication

One of the most reliable ways to find out the real emotional state of a person is to observe his non-verbal behavior. This skill alone will allow you to make a big leap in the ability to interact with people. Recently, science has achieved serious success in this area, and now you do not need to wade through the jungle of the pseudoscience of physiognomy.

How to develop it?

Study non-verbal behavior and observe people. Spouse, brother, sister, boss, subordinate, salesperson - now they are all working to develop your EQ. You can also take our profiling course.


Emotional intelligence is a complex concept that involves many skills. Among them are empathy, self-awareness, curiosity, analytical thinking, understanding of basic needs, interpretation of non-verbal signals. All this will help to correctly identify the emotions of other people and manage them to achieve their own goals.


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