How do you react when your idea isn’t supported at a meeting? When another driver cuts you off in traffic? A family member doesn’t appreciate the hard work you do?
Our depth of emotional intelligence can support us in responding instead of reacting to life’s events.
Emotional Intelligence is traditionally defined as the ability to perceive, control and evaluate emotions.
As a mindfulness-based, body-centered (somatic) psychotherapist, I drop the idea of “control” and move out of the cognitive realm into the body where these emotions occur and are held. Emotional intelligence becomes more about skillfully seeing and tending to emotions. It’s about allowing whatever is arising within us and holding sacred space for it all.
Sounds simple, right? But it’s hard work!
When triggered, our stress response gets activated and our habitual ways of reacting can kick into gear. We might react harshly with our words and attitude before we’ve had an opportunity to really sit with what we are feeling. We often jump into blaming (and shaming) before have paused, tuned into what we are feeling and experiencing, and tended to THOSE internal experiences.
Pausing is key to deepening our emotional intelligence. Tending to what arises in a skillful way – with mindfulness and compassion – are what support us in bringing inner and outer harmony.
This Wednesday, November 11, 2015, our Mind Body Connection community will be gathering to engage in a mindful and compassionate meditation that helps us to deepen our emotional intelligence and hone our ability to respond instead of react. Please join us. You can register here: http://www.eventbrite.com/e/mind-body-connections-improving-your-emotional-intelligence-tickets-18246759549?aff=es2
This post was written by Lisa A. McCrohan, MA, LICSW, RYT, Wellness Workshop Facilitator, psychotherapist, compassion coach and founder of Barefoot Barn.