- Emotional awareness, as in being fully aware of both your emotional state and the emotional state of others around you;
- Emotional application, as in being able to apply your emotional state to problem solving and the tasks at hand;
- Emotional regulation, as in the ability to control your own emotions, as well as help influence the emotions of others.
Of course, those three traits above still don’t really help define how to measure the depth of your emotional intelligence.
Instead, we can consider the following eleven traits that people with high emotional intelligence generally share:
1. They Are Not Perfectionists
Perfectionism frequently gets in the way of finishing things and achieving goals, because searching for the perfect product or solution is often the opposite of simply finding a good one. Beyond that, though, individuals with high emotional intelligence learn from where they fall short, and adjust accordingly, as they see mistakes and shortcomings as opportunities to grow.
2. They Value Work-Life Balance
Individuals with high emotional intelligence understand that life is more than just work, and value keeping balance in their life, including taking breaks and not working during non-work hours. They know how to unplug, get away, and leave work at work, all of which is key for reduced stress levels and long-term life satisfaction.
3. They Welcome Change As Inevitable and Necessary
Many people struggle with life changes, but individuals with high emotional intelligence may actually welcome it, as they recognize it both as an opportunity to adapt and grow.
4. They Are Intrinsically Curious
And this curiosity stretches into all arenas of their life. Additionally, this curiosity translates into empathy.
5. They’re Empathetic
“There’s a spectrum that goes from complete self-absorption to noticing to empathy and to compassion. The simple fact is that if we are focused on ourselves, if we’re preoccupied — which we so often are throughout the day — we don’t really fully notice the other.”
6. They’re Aware of Their Strengths and Weaknesses
Individuals with high emotional intelligence not only know their strengths and weaknesses, but also know how to address their weaknesses to become more well-rounded and skilled people. This isn’t just a matter of their emotions, either, though emotional awareness and self-development are a key part of high emotional intelligence.
7. They’re Self-Motivated
Unlike most people, who are motivated by external rewards, highly emotionally intelligent are self-motivated, driven by their own personal goals.
8. They Focus on the Present
Individuals with high emotional intelligence refuse to look back when they could be living in the present and preparing for the future. Past mistakes, highly emotionally intelligent individuals realize, are things to learn from and move through, rather than something to dwell on.
Setting goals is what enables highly emotionally individuals to succeed.
9. They Focus on the Positive
Emotional intelligence also means spending energy and time focusing on solutions, rather than past problems.
Instead, highly emotionally intelligent individuals focus their energies on the things they can control and change, rather than the things they can’t.
10. They Cannot Be Easily Offended
Highly emotionally intelligent individuals know exactly who they are, and as a result, they’re not easily offended. An additional benefit of know who they are? High self-confidence as well as an open mind.