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ART OF WELLNESS: EMOTIONAL INTELLIGENCE AND THE EFFECT OF THE PANDEMIC

Emotional intelligence or EI is the ability to understand and manage your own emotions, and those of the people around you.

One has to understand that EI along with regular intelligence is important to succeed in life. One has to develop the ability to maintain a balance between the two.

The ability to manage people and relationships is a skill needed to successfully navigate one’s personal as well as professional life. Data suggests that IQ (Intelligence Quotient) only accounts for about 20% of success in life, with the remaining 80% being made up by other factors, emotional intelligence included. IQ reflects how smart we are, but it does not show how we handle our emotional lives. Passions and impulses can derail even those with the highest IQs.

The good news for all is that while some people have EI as a natural talent, for those who don’t, EI skills can be learned. People can learn how to interact more effectively at work and home and increase their emotional intelligence.

What are Emotions?

Emotions are strong impulses that urge us to take immediate action. Our most powerful and primitive emotions want us to survive at all costs, despite the danger, illness and obstacles. There’s nothing wrong with feeling emotions. The problems arise when the emotions are out of tune with the situation and when we don’t express our emotions productively or safely.

Emotional intelligence is the key to loving, working, learning, and taking care of ourselves and others to the best of our abilities. We often forget that to be emotional is to be human. The key is to manage our emotions and use them productively.

According to Daniel Goleman, an American psychologist and science journalist who helped to popularize emotional intelligence, there are five key elements to it:

  1. Self-awareness.
  2. Self-regulation.
  3. Motivation.
  4. Empathy.
  5. Social skills.

If we develop the above skills, we can improve our EI. Holistic healing methods like E.F.T. (Emotional Freedom Technique), ThetaHealing, Meditation, Mindfulness techniques, Family constellation etc. are wonderful tools to connect with our deeper selves and develop social and emotional skills to interact with the world effectively and pleasantly.

Some simple ways of increasing EI are:

  1. Adopt an assertive (not aggressive) style of communicating.
  2. Respond instead of reacting to conflict.
  3. Develop active listening skills.
  4. Be self motivated.
  5. Practice ways to maintain a positive attitude.
  6. Practice self-awareness and patience.
  7. Take critique well.
  8. Empathize with others.

The COVID-19 pandemic has impacted peoples’ emotions in many ways. From panic, anxiety, stress, fear, anger, despair, isolation, grief and concern to deep introspection, transformation and realignment of our thoughts.

We have all been forced to delve deep within and think about how we are going to manage ourselves in these uncertain times. Is it with hope and positivity or with doom and gloom?

We must not forget that we as humans have remarkable powers of strength and resilience that we need to bank upon. We need to focus on these strengths to respond most effectively to this crisis as individuals, family, community members, friends and colleagues. The effect of Covid-19 on mental and emotional health cannot be underestimated, nor can it be exaggerated! The role of the media, governments, health authorities, public health professionals, teachers, parents etc. has become very important. Imparting the right information with utmost responsibility is of paramount importance. At the same time keeping the spirit of hope and positivity is absolutely essential.

While each one of us finds ways to cope in our own way, spreading happiness, cheer, and finding alternative and creative ways of living and working are coming to the fore. Subtle shifts in our mindsets and way of living will go a long way in creating the positivity we need in these times. One step at a time should be our “Mantra”. The role of Holistic therapists, counsellors and trained professionals is becoming very important as they provide the support needed by people to tide over this tough period. It is important for all to develop a coping and thriving mechanism for themselves. It could be learning new healing techniques, developing one’s hobbies, slowing down and connecting more with nature, meeting more positive people, time management, seeking support and help and anything that will keep us sound mentally and emotionally.

While some are unaffected or less affected by the pandemic, others need our support and encouragement. Improving our physical, emotional and mental immunity will give us the much-needed boost we all need in the present times. We need to come together as a community and show our social strength by supporting each other so that we get out of this phase happy and whole.

Neha Bali

 Neha is a Practitioner of energy healing modalities like Thetahealing, E.F.T., Mindfulness, Meditation, and Family constellation. She has 20+ years of experience in holistic healing.

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