Tag Archives: Emotion

Increasing Stress, Decreasing Empathy: Need Emotional Intelligence

See on Scoop.itGlobal Leaders

Research shows stress is increasing: health problems & business costs. Empathy is decreasing to damage collaboration: The case for emotional intelligence

Anne Egros‘s insight:

Very true ! That is why coaching is an holistic process to understand yourself. Stress at home impacts performance at work and stress at work damages your health and personal relationships.

See on www.6seconds.org

Four Reasons You Should Care About Emotional Intelligence

See on Scoop.itGlobal Leaders

In order to run a business in the service industry, you’ll need a wide skill set to attract and satisfy customers.

Courage,  determination, persistence, strategic thinking – there are many characteristics that determine the success of leaders and entrepreneurs. However, one quality stands out among others; a quality that is common among most successful business leaders:  Emotional Intelligence 

What is Emotional Intelligence?

Emotional Intelligence (EQ) is a concept familiarized by Daniel Goleman, an internationally known psychologist, which is defined as one’s ability to understand and manage his or her emotions as they happen in themselves and others, while using this awareness to manage relationships effectively.

Emotional intelligence is a collection of four major skills: self-awareness, self-management, social awareness, and relationship management. Each of the skills fall into two categories: personal competence and social competence.

Personal Competence: is made up of self-awareness and self-management skills, which focus on the internal aspects of a person, especially their own emotions and behavioral tendencies.

Social competence is made up of social awareness and relationship management skills, which focuses on the individual’s behavior in relation to those around them.

Emotional intelligence (EQ) is a key success factor not only for small businesses but for large organizations too and individuals who want to boost their career in management. Although I don’t think emotional intelligence is a new field in organizational behavior it might be new for small business owners and fresh graduates.

The following are important reasons why your service business should keep emotional intelligence in mind:

1. Self Awareness
Emotional intelligence is divided up into four major domains, with self-awareness as the first and foremost trait. Self awareness determines your ability to perceive your emotions and understand how they affect the situation. This is a vital skill for not just service professionals, but for any individual in a business. Self awareness allows you to better address problems and handle complications as they arise, transferring these benefits to your business as well.

2. Self Management
Without the ability to control your own emotions, self-awareness isn’t very valuable. Therefore, self management is another vital skill of emotional intelligence, which allows you to keep your impulses and emotions under control. This is especially important for service professionals – if you let your emotions get the best of you, you may risk your connection with customers. With the ability to adapt to changing situations and keep your emotions in check, your can maintain their trusted position with current and potential clients or customers.

3. Social Awareness
Social awareness allows the individual to perceive the emotions of others, giving them the ability to better empathize and connect with others. This skill is critical in the service industry, where the satisfaction of the customer is everything. Professionals with high emotional intelligence are able to navigate social networks and understand other people’s moods and behaviors. Whether through reading the currents of a conversation or sympathizing with a customer’s needs, professionals are able to use this awareness to suit their business accordingly.

4. Relationship Management
This quality is one of the most important factors for any business that relies heavily on customer satisfaction. A service business is different from one selling a product – it often relies on months or years of nurturing a relationship with the customer. In addition, a service business may rely heavily on referrals and recommendations, which depends on the strength of the bond between the client and provider. Relationship management is a key component of emotional intelligence, aiding the individual in their interactions with others. Whether through improved conflict management or the ability to build bonds, relationship management can help service professionals maintain connections with clients.

If you feel as though you or your team lacks in emotional intelligence, there is no need to worry – unlike IQ or personality, emotional intelligence is a quality that can be trained and developed. With enough practice, your service-based business can quickly take advantage of the various benefits offered by enhancing your emotional intelligence.

Need an assessment of your emotional intelligence?  Check the details of what we offer https://zestnzen.wordpress.com/assessment/  and Contact us: Message

Related articles

Moving Overseas? Don’t Make Big Decisions Under pressure!

If you are an expatriate moving abroad this summer, chances are high that you are under great pressure and stress. You have made the decision to relocate few months ago, although it feels like years. Your partner is already working in your future country and you are the “trailing spouse” in charge of executing the relocation strategy. Now unexpected problems are suddenly on your way and you are facing many dilemmas.

Here some common questions expats have to ask themselves that can lead to really bad decisions if we are overwhelmed and under stress:

  • Should I sell or rent my house while living abroad ? ( Read : http://www.expatguy.com/)
  • What shall I do If the house is not sold before leaving ?
  • How should I sell my car? to a car dealer or a stranger on eBay or Craig list ?
  • Shall I plan the packing date before finding my new house abroad?
  • What do I need to  put in local storage and what must be shipped overseas ?
  • Should I rent a temporary apartment in my new destination or make a house hunt a priority before moving
  • What should I do about schools if my children are on waiting lists of several schools and cannot go to local school due to language barrier ?
  • Should I stay one more school year where I live to get more time to plan the move ?

It is not rare that we have to make big decisions when we are under some kind of pressure such as lack of time, social pressure, too many options, not enough information, highly complex situations or emotional stress.

When we are under pressure, rushed and stressed we are not in the best situation to make rational decisions.  Our emotional brain takes the control of our rational brain, and we make emotional decisions to get instant gratification and relief from the pressure. For example some people overeat or overspend when they are in such emotional state that leads to either poor decision-making or impaired impulse control.

Most of the time, pressure can’t be avoided but we can learn to switch our mind to a non-emotional and objective state to make the best decisions we can based on facts while being conscious of the emotional part of the decision process.

To get an objective mindset is really important to avoid making a bad decision we will regret for years to come. We can’t eliminate all the subjectivity of our emotions, bu we can minimize that bias and make the best decision we can  with the information we have.

Here some tips on getting a quiet mind and make rational decisions:

1-Don’t panic: The worst thing that can happen is to rush decisions too early

2-Keep your options open as long as possible : Don’t plan packing before you know the size of your future home. Better to spend money on flight tickets than having to deal with costly shipment and trashing your furniture.

3-Plan for the worst-case scenario : In case things don’t work overseas have a plan to go back where you live (keep your house for example)

4-Recognize your limitations:  You are not Captain America or Wonder Woman, nothing should be perfect. You have to admit that sometimes you can be an insecure person who doesn’t like to show shortage of knowledge.

5-Keep your pride and ego away You told the world you are going to live a great adventure abroad, friends said goodbye and you keep going just because you don’t want to admit you made a mistake. Better have shame than regrets

6-Be incredibly selfish:.Most trailing spouses are women who put other’s needs before their own needs: children, husband, old parents and so on. To be selfish is about taking the time to focus on your needs, listen to your emotions and to take care of yourself no matter how busy you life is. To be selfish is not being needy or egoist, it is a very healthy habit that helps create both emotional and physical well-being. You create more inner peace, joy and a natural balance.

7-Stay connected: As most expats you may have many expat friends on social networks like Facebook. Sharing your doubts, frustration and other emotions to like-minded people is a great coping strategy and helps you gain clarity about your thought process.. Don’t isolate yourself from local friends and neighbors because you are leaving, meet them until the last minute.

 Any resemblance to real persons, living or dead, is intentional

Should We Let Our Children Cry ?

Today is last day of school !

My son had pain and tears this morning, he said he will never see his friends again as we are moving  to another country this summer. He showed me the school yearbook and I saw many kind words from friends  like “thank you for being nice to me” and I know it was sincere.

Yesterday when I came back home, the kids in the street had written on the driveway with colored chalk: NICK Your Are Great, We Will  Miss You ! that brings tears to my eyes too.

So what should have said to my crying son  this morning  ?

At first I said he is going to have even more friends next year, but why should he believe me ? He already went to 4 different schools in 3 different countries and even worse he had pain NOW so why should he cares about the future ?

Then, I just hug him very strongly and told him that I understood his pain and that we are going to invite his best friends home today or tomorrow and have fun with water guns.

I am sure more tears will come but I think we should let our kids cry , it is a healthy emotional reaction and that is part of the transition process, especially for expats.

How To Move On After Moving In ?

English: Managing emotions - Identifying feelings

Any move to a new home, either next door, next state or across continents is a “moving” experience in more than one way.

No matter how often you changed residence before, moving brings a variety of emotions. I have been moving 12 times and still no matter what, I experience the same emotional pattern starting from excitement about discovering new places, new friends, new school and neighbors to discouragement when you start being frustrated that after about three months you still have cartons non-open, you start to lose confidence in your ability to start a new life, find a best friend, re-start a business and fit in your new community.

The good news is that in most families the new experience usually brings member closer as they cannot rely on external support yet. However when the trailing spouse realizes how hard it is to lose a career, a purpose and  trade a glamorous status for SAHMs or SAHDs things get more complicated. Children often mirror their parents’ emotional status so if the couple is happy, usually kids are fine too.

In his book “The First 90 Days”,  Michael Watkins explains that you basically have three months to take visible actions that have immediate results so people turn from skeptical observers to enthusiast supporters. This may work in corporations, but 90 days for expats or new comers are really nothing. You cannot re-build a life, a social network and a safety net in such short time. High achievers are more likely than others to suffer from too much pressure and stress they put on themselves to prove they are highly adaptable.

There is also an element of grief. No matter how eager you are to move, there will be places, things, and people you will miss.  Many family members experience emotional ups and downs.

Moving is a challenging and difficult experience for a family, especially for children. It is natural, therefore, for parents to be concerned about the effect of the move. When faced with a move, it is important to remember that reactions from children will vary depending on their personality and developmental age. The personality of the child is important because it influences the time a child may take to adjust to the move. Some children are naturally outgoing and will be able to make friends immediately while some other children may take months.

To summarize in a nutshell the concept of “moving on” after “moving in” follow these three steps:

1-Recognize you need time to adjust and that the speed of adaptation varies greatly depending on the age, the status and the personality of the family members

2-Acknowledge any loss you had by leaving your previous home but consciously decide to look to the positive aspects of your new situation and what you can gain by discovering your new place and avoid comparing “before ” and “after” the move.

3-Use the transition period to clarify your values, your vision and purpose in life. Think out of the box and have a personal project that brings you joy and happiness such as going back to school, volunteering, starting a business or improve your fitness level, Choose something specific that is aligned with your values,  who you truly are and what you really enjoy to do, do not chose a project because you have to. Find partners and friends to help find resources and keep your motivation high.

How to Manage Anger, It Can Be Very Positive And Incredibly Destructive

Angry Talk (Comic Style)

Image via Wikipedia

Anger can be normal and healthy emotion that helps us instinctively detect and respond to a threatening situation. More than this, when it is properly channeled, it can be a powerful motivating force – we all know how hard we can work to remedy an obvious injustice.

However it can also be an emotion that gets out of control, leading to stress, distress, unhealthiness and unhappiness. Uncontrolled anger can seriously harm your personal and professional life, because it can become incredibly destructive – to yourself and the people around you.

And in a modern workplace that often demands trust and collaboration, it can cause great damage to working relationships.

This article teaches an effective 12-step approach that helps you direct your anger constructively rather than destructively. The 12-step approach is based on the ideas of Duke University’s Redford Williams, MD, who with his wife, authored the best-selling book Anger Kills. (In this book, Williams discusses 17 steps for controlling anger – these are often abridged to the 12 steps described here.)

Understanding the Theory

Anger is a well-developed coping mechanism that we turn to when our goals are frustrated, or when we feel threat to ourselves or to people, things and ideas we care about. It helps us react quickly and decisively in situations where there is no time for a careful, reasoned analysis of the situation. And it can motivate us to solve problems, achieve our goals, and remove threats.

Acting in anger can serve, therefore, to protect yourself or others. A positive response and constructive outcome can improve your self-esteem and self-confidence.

The Danger of Anger – Foolishness…

On the other hand, a negative response can damage relationships and lead to a loss of respect and self-respect. This is particularly the case when we react instantly and angrily to what we perceive to be a threat, but where that perception is wrong. This can leave us looking very foolish.

So we need to learn to use anger positively, and manage it so that it is constructive and not destructive. Where situations are not immediately life-threatening, we need to calm down and evaluate the accuracy of our perceptions before, if necessary, channeling anger in a powerful but controlled way.

Anger management, then, is the process of learning how to “calm down” and diffuse the negative emotion of anger before it gets to a destructive level.

A Subjective Experience

People experience anger in many different ways and for many different reasons. What makes you angry may only mildly irritate one of your colleagues, and have little to no effect on another. This subjectivity can make anger difficult to understand and deal with; it also highlights that the response is down to you. So anger management focuses on managing your response (rather than specific external factors). By learning to manage your anger, you can develop techniques to deal with and expel the negative response and emotions before it causes you serious stress, anxiety and discomfort.

Despite our differences in the level of anger we feel toward something, there are some universal causes of anger that include:

  • Frustration of our goals
  • Hurt
  • Harassment
  • Personal attack (mental or physical) on ourselves
  • Threat to people, things or ideas that we hold dear.

We commonly experience these potential anger triggers in our daily lives. An appropriate level of anger that is expressed correctly helps us take the right action, solve the problem that is presenting itself, or deal with the situation in a positive manner. If we can learn to manage our anger, we will learn to express it appropriately and act constructively.

Using the Tool:

So when you’re angry, use Redford Williams’ 12 steps to calm down:

Step 1: Maintain a “Hostility Log”
Download our free Hostility Log worksheet and use it to monitor what triggers your anger and the frequency of your anger responses. When you know what makes you angry, you will be in a better position to develop strategies to contain it or channel it effectively.

Step 2: If you do, acknowledge that you have a problem managing anger
It is an observed truth that you cannot change what you don’t acknowledge. So it is important to identify and accept that anger is a roadblock to your success.

Step 3: Use your support network
If anger is a problem, let the important people in your life know about the changes you are trying to make. They can be a source of motivation and their support will help you when you lapse into old behavior patterns.

Step 4: Use Anger Management techniques to interrupt the anger cycle

  • Pause
  • Take deep breaths
  • Tell your self you can handle the situation
  • Stop the negative thoughts

Step 5: Use empathy
If another person is the source of your anger, try to see the situation from his or her perspective. Remind yourself to be objective and realize that everyone makes mistakes and it is through mistakes that people learn how to improve.

Step 6: Laugh at yourself
Humor is often the best medicine. Learn to laugh at yourself and not take everything so seriously.

The next time you feel tempted to kick the photocopier, think about how silly you would look and see the humor in your inappropriate expressions of anger.

Step 7: Relax
Angry people are often the ones who let the little things bother them. If you learn to calm down you will realize that there is no need to get uptight and you will have fewer angry episodes.

Step 8: Build Trust
Angry people can be cynical people. They believe that others are going to do something on purpose to annoy or frustrate them even before it happens. If you can build trust in people you will be less likely to become angry with them when something does go wrong and more likely to attribute the problem to something other than a malicious intent.

Step 9: Listen
Miscommunication contributes to frustrating and mistrusting situations. The better you listen to what a person is saying, the better able you will be to find a resolution that does not involve an anger response.

Step 10: Be Assertive
Remember, the word is assertive NOT aggressive. When you are angry it is often difficult to express yourself properly. You are too caught up in the negative emotion and your physiological symptoms (beating heart, red face) to put together solid arguments or appropriate responses. If you learn to assert yourself and let other people know your expectations, boundaries, issues, and so on, you will have much more interpersonal success.

Step 11: Live each day as if it is your last
This saying may be overused, but it holds a fundamental truth. Life is short and it is much better spent positively than negatively. Realize that if you spend all your time getting angry, you will miss out on the many joys and surprises that life has to offer.

Step 12: Forgive
To ensure that the changes you are making go much deeper than the surface, you need to forgive the people in your life that have angered you. It is not easy letting go of past hurts and resentments but the only way to move past your anger is to let go of these feelings and start fresh. (Depending on what, or who, is at the root of your anger, you may have to solicit the help of a professional to achieve this fully.)

These 12 steps form a comprehensive plan to get control of inappropriate and unproductive anger. And the quicker you begin the better. Anger and stress are highly correlated and the effects of stress on the body are well documented. Visit the MindTools stress management section to learn even more about the effects of stress and how to deal with it. You will find that many of the techniques presented here are used in stress management as well because both are negative, emotional-based influences in our lives, and the approach for dealing with them is therefore quite similar.

Even if you are not at the point where you feel your anger is a problem, it is a wise idea to familiarize yourself with the processes listed. If you do not have the tools to deal with anger correctly, it has a way of building-up over time. Before you know it, you can be in a position where anger is controlling you and becoming a negative influence in your life. Being proactive with anger management will help to ensure it remains a healthy emotion that protects you from unnecessary hurt or threat.

Key Points

Anger is a powerful force, both for good and bad. Used irresponsibly, it can jeopardize your relationships, your work and your health.

Redford Williams’ 12-step approach for dealing with unconstructive anger is a well-balanced system that emphasizes knowing yourself and your triggers and then using that awareness to replace negative angry behavior with more positive actions and thoughts. While you don’t want to quell your anger completely, you do need to manage it if you’re to use it creatively.

And remember that anger can be creative. People act when they get angry. And providing their actions are constructive, this actually helps drive change and get things done.

Article originally posted :  Anger Management – Stress Management Training from MindTools.com

Why Branding Works?


Why paying $3 for a coffee at Starbucks ? Why paying more for a Diet Coke than a store brand Cola ? Why calling back someone you met at a networking event and ignoring the others ?

Well, logic rarely wins over emotions: our behaviors are most of the time dictated by our subconscious mind, feelings and emotions. We think we are in control and that we are making rational choices but in fact logic has usually nothing to do with our first impulse, we make a rational to justify our irrational choices.

Dan Ariely in his book “Predictably Irrational” take several examples of what influences our irrational behaviors. You can access to his free Videocasts on his website Predictably irrational

So branding yourself is about choosing consciously the image you want to project to attract potential employers, clients, dates or friends for example.

Branding is more like a science than an art. By being aware of your true values, principles and things you really love, by eliminating things you tolerate that do not serve you, you become more authentic. Like “Susan Boyle” in my previous post, you must know what you are excellent at and confident that given a chance, you will win people’s emotional reaction. Not pretending what you are not is also very important.

Personal Branding is knowing what you have to offer, what you want the most, who you want to attract. Being aware of who you really are inside creates an appeal and project good energy to people who are like minded or have something to share with you.

Ask your friends, family, colleagues and boss what they really think about your attitude, strengths and skills. Focus on the positive, people are usually more prolific on criticisms and negativity, so do not allow them to do that to you.

%d bloggers like this: