Raise your EQ for Life Success

Raise your EQ for men and gain success in life.

I’m sure many of you have heard the terms, Emotional Quotient, or Emotional Intelligence. If not, they refer specifically to the way we make decisions and manage reactions from an emotional level. You see, as human beings, we have a visceral desire to feel good about the choices we make. So, would it surprise you to know making choices based on how we feel doesn’t always align with what makes us happy?

It’s easy to see this illustrated during a difficult time when every choice is less than ideal. Understandably, these decisions will not make us happy or even successful. But, what about the mundane daily choices we are faced with or the big life-changing decisions that will affect our futures for years to come? If you consider the implications of the large and the small questions we face daily, our success and happiness are being challenged regularly. Recognizing that our personal and professional relationships are directly affected by the choices we make, we must learn how to make good decisions in all aspects of life. By doing so we will have more success in all aspects of life. This is why raising your EQ is so important, because it helps us to make smart choices.
Let’s face a brazen truth, some individuals are simply masters at making poor choices. We all know someone with whom everything goes wrong, all the time, right? Some of you may even be this person. This individual has constant strife in their relationships, their jobs, their kids, their cars, their schools, and so on. Nothing ever seems to go right. The real harsh truth is that there is a strong likelihood their personal choices played a significant role in perpetuating their problems. If you are this person, it’s time to face the cold hard truth. Your choices will affect your today, and your tomorrow.
Now, I’m not discounting the fact that things will go wrong beyond control at times, of course, this happens. But, constant failure and lack of happiness in relationships and other endeavors are the results of our own poor choices, not that of fate, or others in our lives. The immediate bright side is, that for most people, consistently making poor decisions is not by design. Rather, it’s by not understanding what the root cause of their choices are, which we will get into a bit later. What’s important for now is understanding that doing the work to raise your EQ can significantly improve your quality of life by helping you make better choices regularly and with purpose.
It’s important to note that your EQ is unique to you. It does not reflect how you compare to others in terms of intelligence. You can be highly intelligent and still have a low EQ. Many traits considered to be common in individuals with high IQs are common in individuals with low EQs. Many believe the traits exist opposite each other. Meaning if you have a high IQ you will have a low EQ and vice versa. However, that theory does not completely hold up as conclusive. Everyone is different and even people considered to operate with high EQ make poor decisions. They just tend to make them less often. Either way, we all benefit when we commit to the work of being better decision-makers.
There are four main categories related to one’s EQ:
  • Self-awareness
  • Self-management
  • Social Awareness
  • Social Management

Everything you experience in life can be sorted into one of these four boxes, and how you manage your experiences is directly related to your Emotional Intelligence. In other words, your EQ directly affects the way you handle life’s situations.

This is why understanding how your emotions affect your behaviors and learning to make them work for you, instead of against you is critical to your success and happiness. I refer to measuring success and happiness in terms of your relationships, both personal and professional, and your motivation and drive in your family life, career aspirations, and play or hobbies.

The Struggle

What are some common results you may experience in life if you have a low EQ?

  • You may feel frustrated with your partner or boss often.
  • You may anger easily and immediately act defensively.
  • You may pass on opportunities out of fear.
  • You may feel like you’re not being heard.
  • You may have few or no friends.
  • You may be passed over for promotions or opportunities.
  • You may feel like an outsider at work or home.
  • You may choose to remain in the background.
  • You may have low confidence
  • You may lack motivation

I could go on, but you get the idea. When so many of your decisions end up making you feel like your life is being spent in the shadow of others, or constantly crashing and burning around you. You can end up deflated and lacking motivation. Instead of rising above it all, you dwell in the ashes. Having a low EQ can be self-debilitating without you even knowing why.

Becoming the Phoenix

If you have a low EQ, are you forever destined to be unsuccessful, have rocky relationships, and handle life’s decisions poorly? The simple answer is no. However, you have to do the work to raise your EQ, and some things will require your attention for life. Research suggests many factors go into the development of your EQ. Physiology, genetics, childhood upbringing, social experiences, traumatic events, and more, all helped to shape your EQ. For this reason, everyone’s EQ is different, and some things are baked in, like genetics, and to an extent, engrained through upbringing; while others are self-learned through social experiences. The good news is, low emotional intelligence can be changed through the understanding of how our ingrained emotional reactions affect our decision-making and learning how to change the embedded reactions that keep us down.

To improve the way we handle life, we need to take an honest and deep look at why we make the choices we make. I don’t mean to look at our past decisions as a whole, I mean a deep assessment for each decision.

Going Three Levels Deep

The Global Leadership Foundation suggests that understanding why we make the choices we do requires analyzing each decision to three levels deep. For example:

Let’s say you are up for a promotion at work and are asked to give a big presentation to an influential group, but you decline so the project, and ultimately the promotion, go to someone else in your company.

You would then ask yourself, and honestly answer, three probing questions intended to delve three levels deep into your reasoning for avoiding the opportunity.

Q: Why did I say no to giving the presentation?

A: Because I don’t like speaking in front of groups. It makes me very uncomfortable.

Q: Why are you uncomfortable speaking in front of groups?

A: Because it’s scary. I feel stupid and self-conscious.

Q: Why do you feel scared, stupid, and self-conscious?

A: Because I’m afraid these people know more about this subject than I do.

Often, if you are honest with yourself, you will see the root reason behind your decision was based on an assumption, in other words, a subconscious lie you told yourself. You can’t possibly know what knowledge the group of people you would have presented to possess on a particular topic, and you were likely asked because you are knowledgeable on the topic. Even if they did know about the subject, your knowledge and perspective would have been different than theirs, making it valuable.

Now that you understand this, you can challenge your assumptions (self lies) and determine if they are valid. If the assumptions are invalid you can change your perspective and in turn, your assumption. Having this understanding of your emotional decision-making is one step to raising your EQ. The next step is putting this understanding to use.

The Big Lie

Analyzing our Self-awareness and the other aspects of our lives may seem like a simple enough task but your self-protection mechanisms will come into play. I call this The Big Lie. The truth is, we can’t possibly know what we’re going to want from life in detail twenty or thirty years from now. So, it’s important to ponder two things:

  1. What lifelong success looks like.
  2. What change looks like.

Upon considering the first point: What lifelong success looks like, you will conjure an image in your mind of what success looks like to you. Perhaps it’s having a nice home, car, a happy marriage, two kids, and a dog. Perhaps it means fame, fortune, sports cars, mansions, luxury yachts, and an entourage. Everyone’s vision of success is uniquely their own. Think of this image as an overarching umbrella, under which your entire life unfolds. Whatever your vision is, the means to manifesting it are the same as the next person. One must shed their limiting pre-conceived perceptions, their deep emotional barriers, and master sound decision-making and healthy behaviors in the following four aspects of life: Self-awareness, Self-management, Social Awareness, and Social Management.

When considering the second point: What change looks like. You will challenge your vision of happiness and success. Because ultimately, life will not go exactly as planned, even when making great choices. If you become so rigid in the pursuit of your vision, that you can’t flex and flow with life changes, you will fall into the same old self-protecting, surface decision-making habits. You will see your vision slip away through frustration and anger. Conversely, allowing your vision to move and expand as circumstances change and as your desires grow, you will continue to make sound choices that perpetuate success, whatever that looks like at the time. This is how moving forward works. It may not always be in the direction you initially envision, but it’s forward progress.

I guarantee people like Elon Musk are not where they expected they would be twenty years ago, and yet, he would consider himself successful in his endeavors. People like this have the wherewithal to adjust as life presents itself. In ancient Buddhist culture happiness and success were directly related to one’s ability to bend with the wind. The premise in its simplest explanation is that being rigid will break you, the concept here is no different.

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