Emotional intelligence represents an ability to validly reason with emotions and to use emotions to enhance thought. Emotional intelligence increases when you pay attention to your feelings and learn from them. Staying with the sensation of a feeling is to drop right down into the energy of the feeling found in your body. Once you are in that energy you can do a few things. One, you can just stay with that energy and listen for what it has to tell you, or two, you can go down into the energy and experience it until it disappears, leaving you in the experience of Pure Consciousness, or three, you can go to the outside of the energy and experience Consciousness directly. Remember that the experience is as deep as the ocean so there are an infinite number of possibilities when experiencing the energy of a feeling.
10 Tips to Increase Emotional Intelligence
1. Become emotionally literate. Label your feelings, rather than labeling people or situations. Use three word sentences beginning with “I feel”. Start labeling feelings; stop labeling people & situations “I feel impatient.” vs “This is ridiculous.” I feel hurt and bitter”. vs. “You are an insensitive jerk.” “I feel afraid.” vs. “You are driving like an idiot.”
2. Distinguish between thoughts and feelings. Thoughts: I feel like…& I feel as if…. & I feel that vs. Feelings: I feel: (feeling word)
3. Take more responsibility for your feelings. “I feel jealous.” vs. “You are making me jealous.” Analyze your own feelings rather than the action or motives of other people. Let your feelings help you identify your unmet emotional needs.
4. Use your feelings to help make decisions. “How will I feel if I do this?” “How will I feel if I don’t?” “How do I feel?” “What would help me feel better?” Ask others “How do you feel?” and “What would help you feel better?”
5. Use feelings to set and achieve goals. Set feeling goals. Think about how you want to feel or how you want others to feel. (your employees, your clients, your students, your children, your partner) Get feedback and track progress towards the feeling goals by periodically measuring feelings from 0-10. For example, ask clients, students, teenagers how much they feel respected from 0 to 10.
6. Feel energized, not angry. Use what others call “anger” to help feel energized to take productive action.
7. Validate other people’s feelings. Show empathy, understanding, and acceptance of other people’s feelings.
8. Use feelings to help show respect for others. How will you feel if I do this? How will you feel if I don’t? Then listen and take their feelings into consideration.
9. Don’t advise, command, control, criticize, judge or lecture to others. Instead, try to just listen with empathy and non-judgment.
10. Avoid people who invalidate you. While this is not always possible, at least try to spend less time with them, or try not to let them have psychological power over you.