EXPAND EMOTIONAL AWARENESS
expand emotional awareness expand emotional awareness expand emotional awareness
What really determines how intelligent we are?
Many of us are raised in a society that places certain skills and professions on a pedestal. These people are seen as the smartest and most competent, not only in their field of expertise but on a global scale. People who have this traditional intelligence are praised for being logical while solving problems, and doing so in an efficient manner. While these traits are beneficial, why have they become the end all be all?
Fortunately society is waking up to the realization that there is more than one type of intelligence, thus more than one skillset. But we’re still a long ways from seeing these different intellects as equally valuable. People who thrive in a logical or high-stress environment are still considered to be “better” and “smarter”, therefore they earn more money and are highly regarded. While someone with strong social or emotional skills is more likely to be pitied or looked down upon and receive less accolades. So why does society scoff at intelligences that don’t fit the traditional mold?
We don’t see things as valuable unless it has a special meaning to us or it gives us something that nothing else can. Emotional intelligence (EI) is something that should check both of these boxes for all of us. It helps us understand our sense of self while also giving us insight into others and the world around us. Having a well developed EI essentially allows us to be in charge and in control of our emotions. Thus we have more control over our lives.
So why doesn’t emotional intelligence hold more value? Perhaps it’s because we were taught to be productive, to always have a purpose or a next step. Many of us learned that being successful means fitting into the societal mold and trying to climb the ladder of success -thus ignoring the other potential life paths. But this ladder isn’t made for -and can’t hold- everyone. Some of us are here to interact with the world and people in a more connected way. This usually means that we’ve chosen to stop climbing the ladder. Instead, we communicate and learn from those who are next to us -and help those who’ve fallen from higher heights.
With the rise of mental health awareness, society is slowly learning that there is value to knowing our minds and gaining perspective on our thoughts and feelings. But acknowledging it is different than embracing and living it. Everyone has the capability to connect with their emotional intelligence. In order to tune into our EI we have to be open, honest, and vulnerable with ourselves. Once we’ve embraced our emotions we can use them to connect with our inner authenticity.
When we choose to live authentically we are able to see ourselves more clearly. We no longer see the excuses and reasons why we refuse, reject, or repress our thoughts and emotions. We allow everything to be as it is because we are so in tune with our true self. But this takes courage and commitment. Many of us are afraid of exposing our inner self because we think we’ll be judged, no one will understand us, we’ll never be accepted, or we won’t find a likeminded community. Thus we feel heightened hesitation before we allow ourselves to open up and connect with others on a deeper level. But this fear is something we must overcome if we want to expand our horizons.
Emotional intelligence isn’t just something that we cultivate within us, it’s also used to relate with others. Whenever we interact with someone and we’re being our open, authentic self, this then creates a safe space for their authentic self to be heard too. Thus being emotionally intelligent transforms into a state of mind. It surpasses any single physical or mental trait we have by encompassing them all.
We can learn how to use our best self in any situation by staying true to who we are, no matter what comes our way. And isn’t that what wisdom really is? The ability to know when to use our strengths, understand our weaknesses, and the vulnerability to share them with the world.
Practices & Motivations