Being emotionally intelligent is an important skill that involves empathy, self-awareness, adaptability, positivity and the desire to succeed and help others do the same. But building emotional intelligence at work is equally important.

EQ is about understanding and managing your own feelings and emotions. This results in resolving conflicts, taking good business decisions, better leadership, reacting to criticism positively, and more.

Emotional intelligence in the workplace is a set of skills and qualities that one can adapt to be a better worker and employer. This will turn the whole work environment into a safe space, a place to learn from each other, a second home where everyone is showing empathy and no one is judging.

All that can be achieved if each individual in the workplace does something to develop emotional intelligence.

Here are some practical ways to improve your EQ.

How to Increase Emotional Intelligence at Work

1. Notice your emotions and consider their impact.

Self-awareness begins with knowing one’s emotions, being able to make a difference between the positive and negative ones, analyzing the underlying cause and their impact.

Practicing this daily will help you understand that emotions are fleeting and they shouldn’t affect your behavior in the workplace.

This exercise for increasing emotional intelligence at work also allows you to start acknowledging other people’s emotions. Which can turn you into a better employee and colleague.

2. Control impulsive actions.

Impulsive actions are based on impulsive emotions and they lead to arguments, drama in the office, and tension in a team. That affects work productivity, projects and the relationships between employees. 

You don’t want to let your emotions take control over your behavior as you’d be perceived as weak. Others might avoid you or working together on a project, which can prevent you from getting the promotion you’ve been working hard for.

Instead, stay away from conflicts and always take your time before responding to criticism or any other provocation. Listen more than you talk and try to figure out why others do what they do.

Understanding the emotions behind their actions will help you choose peace and compassion any time you’re confronted. 

3. Express yourself openly. 

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Part of having high EQ is learning how to be comfortable with expressing yourself and doing it often. That means sharing your opinion but also hearing what others have to say, encouraging them to be more open, speaking up when something isn’t right and dealing with unresolved issues.

4. Improve your and others’ motivation. 

There’s no place for jealousy in a team. Instead, emotional intelligence at work can set everyone up for success.

But that begins with your intrinsic motivation. 

Define the things you love about your job and remind yourself of the perks. Focus on the positive, acknowledge your strengths and decide to work on your weaknesses.

With this new mindset, you’ll inspire those around you to follow your lead. You can set goals together and celebrate the small wins. That’s essential for building a team of hard-working and driven individuals.

5. Brush up on your social skills.

Effective communication is closely related to being emotionally intelligent. Get better at that by learning the art of persuasion, becoming a better listener, asking the right questions and speaking in the right manner to gain attention and respect.

Doing this will help you to get what you want in your chosen career field but without affecting other people’s performance. It’s a set of skills that will allow you to form relationships, find a mentor, learn from everyone around you, get the information you need, and slowly but steadily reach your goals.

6. Have productive arguments.

Professionalism is nothing without passion. But passion causes arguments to get heated rather quickly if you disagree with a coworker about the task at hand.

While it’s okay to have disagreements at work, it is important to do it in a way that has a positive outcome for both sides (preferably with no screaming).  Here’s a guide on how to have a productive argument at work:

There are many ways to develop emotional intelligence at work and these 6 are a good start.