Emotional intelligence for life

Self awareness is key to self understanding

The shared essence of emotional intelligence is to be accurately aware of your emotions and to know your personal strengths and limits. To become an effective change agent whether as a mentor, parent, coach, facilitator, executive or partner we need to understand our own paradigms, especially our paradigms about ourselves.

This is certainly not easy to master.

Most of us are more aware of what we think of others instead of knowing who we are.

The posture needed to get in touch with your emotions and to know yourself, I call a ‘reflective posture’. In this context I use ‘reflective’ in the same way a mirror reflects back to you what you see when you look into it. By ‘posture’ I mean it is an eternal lifestyle you embrace. Reflective posture would thus mean you live a lifestyle where you are continuously confronting yourself with who you are, what you do and how & what you say.

Isn’t it fair to say that to discover yourself you have to look at yourself? You have to step back from yourself (as if hovering in the air behind yourself) and ‘look’ at yourself. You have to ‘look’ at what you do and ‘hear’ what you say. This tend to be more difficult for those with a rigid, ‘I am always right and you are wrong’ paradigm. Others who went through severe trauma as children also find it difficult to confront themselves, especially their ‘inner children’.

The Johari window teaches us that we all have blind spots that can be eliminated by getting feedback from others. Most of our blind spots can be eliminated by asking others what they think of us.

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