Human experience and conscious living develops through our awareness and need for authenticity. As we continue to explore this concept for a more intentional way of living, the truth behind authenticity segues into our need for emotional intelligence. As we evolved from our primitive roots, our survival depended upon one fundamental truth: society. We are innate social beings. Not only are we social beings, we are also emotional beings. This is the second fundamental truth. Since our human experience is comprised of the need for social interaction, our interaction within social contexts is based on our emotionally construct.
The essential truth of emotional intelligence is one’s ability to balance feelings and reason. It is the heart of empathy and compassion through the recognition of our own emotions as well as the emotions of others. This is two-fold:
- Recognize and understand our own emotions
- Recognize, understand, and influence the emotions of others
There are five categories researchers have identified:
Becoming aware of our own emotions in the present moment requires one to “tune into” our true feelings. Recognize the impact and effect they have on us and on others around us. We evaluate our emotions through the lenses of self-worth and confidence as it relates to our own capabilities.
In a conversation that is recorded in the beginning pages of the Bible, a profound statement is made. The Lord notices the affect Cain exhibits. In the dialogue, we read that God recognized the anger within Cain. This anger is attached to the sacrifices Abel and he presented. Abel’s was acceptable and pleasing to the Lord, while Cain’s was rejected. At this point, Cain has a choice, learn to manage his presenting emotional state and learn to “rule over it” or, allow his present emotional state to rule over him and cause him to sin: “and sin is crouching at the door” (Genesis 4:5-7, ESV).
Since emotions are part of our human experience, we have limited control over how, and when, we may experience our emotions. What we have the capacity to do is manage our emotions:
- Limit impulsive/compulsive decision making
- Maintain healthy standards of honesty and integrity
- Taking responsibility
- Being adaptable and flexible
- Being innovative and receptive
This is important to understand when we experience emotions that are labeled negative (e.g., Anger).
Motivation and empowerment
Emotional intelligence is a drive for our need to progress, evolve, and move forward with innovative ideas. This requires motivation to achieve specific goals and having the appropriate attitude toward realizing those goals.
- We become driven to strive for excellence and improvement to our quality of life by meeting particular standards
- Our commitment to align with the particular goals of others (work, school, community, society)
- Taking initiative to act on any available opportunities
- Optimism in pushing past any barriers, obstacles, and overcoming setbacks
Setting and achieving goals, whether personal or communal, empowers and motivates us to strive toward becoming more and more enriched with our own defining of authenticity and intentional living consciously.
The ability to discern how others are feeling appears to be another integral component to our human experience and conscious living. It goes beyond merely attempting to understand how a person feels. It is developing a sense of understanding their presenting emotions, how it influences your own emotions, and the ability to respond in healthy ways. This appears to look like:
- One’s ability to anticipate another individual needs and be of service in meeting those needs
- Developing and influencing others by seeing their need to progress
- Leveraging and networking through diverse people to cultivate opportunities to collabrate
- Ability to read another individual/group emotional currents
- Having an understanding of other people through discernment of their feelings behind needs and wants
This is where conscious living is anchored.
This feeds back into the fundamental truth that part of our human experience centers around social interaction. We develop interpersonal skills – or, how we relate to others and how they relate to us in defined relationships. What this looks like is:
- Influence – essential the fine art of persuasion
- Ability to communicate clear messages
- Guiding and inspiring other individuals
- Initiating change, or, providing a catalyst for change to take place within others
- Ability to engage in conflict management and resolution
- Nurturing and cultivating genuine relationships with others
- Working with others in a collaborative environment to achieve common goals
- Creation of synergy within a collective consciousness to meet collective goals
Without healthy relationships that are consciously cultivated, we falter in developing the ability to empathize, understand, and negotiate. (Adapted from What is Emotional Intelligence (EQ)).
Daniel Goleman’s is a recommended book to further explore the idea of Emotional Intelligence. It is groundbreaking in presenting an understanding of how our rational and emotional components of perception and success in our personal lives. It delves into how we relate to others based on the idea of Emotional literacy.
By purchasing this book through the link above, you are supporting continued publication of relevant, thought provoking, and inspiring articles and essays on presenting political, social, and religious issues facing us today.
Through understanding emotional intelligence, and how it relates to conscious living as part of our human experience, we develop a heightened sense of happiness, peace of mind, and our approach in treatment towards others. It is our own personal journey getting to the core essence of self, as well as recognizing the core essence of others.