Emotional intelligence (EI) is the ability to recognize and understand one’s own emotions and the emotions of others and to use this awareness to manage one’s own behavior and relationships effectively. It is a key factor in personal and professional success and can be developed and improved upon throughout one’s life.

Here at Grey Matters of Carmel, we take great pride in helping people of all ages with their mental health and peak performance, which in turn helps with emotional intelligence. By giving the brain the tools and knowledge it needs for healthy regulation and emotional management, many of our clients have expressed how much more intuitive they feel about their own emotions. But how can you tell if you actually have a higher level of emotional intelligence (or have any at all)? Let’s take a look.

Signs Someone Has Higher Emotional Intelligence

There are several signs that a person may have high emotional intelligence. For starters, they are able to effectively communicate and express their own emotions, as well as listen and understand the emotions of others. Furthermore, they are able to regulate their own emotions and respond to the emotions of others in a thoughtful and appropriate manner. This leads to more empathy and deeper connections with others which helps people with higher emotional intelligence form and maintain healthy relationships.

How Emotional Intelligence is Measured

There are several ways to measure and assess emotional intelligence. One standard method is through the use of EI tests or assessments. These can be self-report measures, where the individual being tested answers questions about their own emotions and behaviors, or they can be observer-report measures, where someone who knows the individual well, such as a colleague or supervisor, rates their emotional intelligence.

One of the most widely used emotional intelligence assessments is the Mayer-Salovey-Caruso Emotional Intelligence Test (MSCEIT). This test consists of 141 questions that measure an individual’s ability to perceive, understand, and use emotions. It is scored on a scale with a maximum possible score of 200.

Another widely used assessment is the Emotional Quotient Inventory (EQ-i 2.0). This test consists of 133 questions and measures five components of emotional intelligence: self-perception, self-expression, interpersonal, decision-making, and stress management. It is also scored on a scale, with a maximum possible score of 100 for each of the five components and a total maximum score of 500.

In addition to emotional intelligence tests, emotional intelligence can also be assessed through observation and feedback from others, such as through performance evaluations or 360-degree feedback.

5 Tips For Developing Emotional Intelligence

It’s important to note that emotional intelligence isn’t something anyone is born with. However, we are all given the same tool that allows us to form and improve it over time: A brain. Your brain is a powerful organ that not only regulates itself but also aims to understand itself – A pretty wild concept if you ask us. But the brain can also get stuck, and emotional regulation can freeze due to trauma, stress, and anxiety. So, besides trying neurofeedback training, here are a few other ways you can develop and improve your emotional intelligence.

1. Practice Self-Awareness

To increase self-awareness, try setting aside time each day for self-reflection. Ask yourself how you are feeling and try to identify the emotions you are experiencing. Pay attention to your body’s physical responses to emotions, such as changes in heart rate or tense muscles. This will help you better understand and recognize your own emotions.

2. Practice Self-Regulation

To regulate your emotions, it’s important to understand your triggers and learn how to manage them. Try using deep breathing exercises or other relaxation techniques to calm yourself in moments of intense emotion. It’s also essential to find healthy ways to cope with negative emotions, such as talking to a friend or engaging in a relaxing activity.

3. Practice Empathy

To become more empathetic, try to put yourself in others’ shoes and try to understand their perspective. When you are having a conversation with someone, really listen to what they are saying and try to see things from their perspective. Practice active listening by making eye contact, nodding, and asking clarifying questions.

4. Improve Communication Skills

To improve your communication skills, try to be aware of your body language and tone of voice. Pay attention to how you come across to others and try to use a respectful and open-minded tone. It’s also important to be clear and direct in your communication and to be open to feedback from others.

5. Work on Relationships

Building and maintaining healthy relationships is an important part of emotional intelligence. To do this, try to be understanding and considerate of others and be willing to compromise and find common ground. Practice forgiveness and try to see the good in others, even when they make mistakes.

Exercises for EQ Improvement

There are also several exercises that can help you become more aware of your emotions and improve your emotional intelligence. One such exercise is journaling, where you write down your thoughts and feelings each day. This can help you better understand your emotions and how they affect your behavior. Another exercise is practicing mindfulness, where you focus on the present moment and pay attention to your surroundings and your own thoughts and feelings. This can help you better recognize and manage your emotions.

By taking just a few moments each day, you can connect with yourself, your emotions, and your thoughts, all of which will help you regulate your emotions and make you more aware of the level of your emotional intelligence.

Neurofeedback & Your Emotional Intelligence

Feel like your emotions are out of control and you’re going insane? Then it may be time to find a better route to emotional intelligence through neurofeedback training from Grey Matters of Carmel. Because of our state-of-the-art training protocols, we can help your brain find better and healthier ways to cope. By creating new neural pathways, you’ll find that you’re able to think more clearly, handling situations with more logic and less emotion, and regulate your emotions on a deeper level. Whether you’re living with anxiety, depression, or what remains of a concussion, we want to help you! The first step to improving your emotional intelligence is to contact us today!

Photo by Denys Nevozhai on Unsplash
Photo by Dustin Belt on Unsplash