In continuation to my last week’s article on Emotional Intelligence (EI), I would like to share some more insight into human emotions. When I read about the latest concept of people hiring relatives or friends for hosting weddings, parties etc., for want of friends or relatives, to showcase their social circle, my first reaction to a very innovative business venture was – why does one need to pay or buy such a service? Why do some people find it so difficult to make friends and nurture friendships? Agreed, one cannot choose one’s relatives, but one can definitely have close ties with the ones we are bestowed with.
Another latest concept picking up is cuddle parties. Weird as it may sound, it is mushrooming in the west. People pay for cuddles to strangers. Again makes me think what kind of a world we are living in? We live in a so called modern world where more and more people interact through screens – small and large, where typed messages become easier than meeting and conversing with a person of flesh and blood, unfortunately sad but true. I am afraid a time will come when paying for emotional and physical connect may seem as common as paying for therapy.
Clichéd as it may sound, EI plays a vital role in our disposition towards making friends. Well, befriending someone is just step one. To make a friendship last, one needs to have all the core characteristics of EI, viz. self-awareness – one needs to be conscious of one’s emotions at all times, especially when interacting with people. Self-regulation is another characteristic, the ability to manage one’s emotions under pressure. All close relationships go through ups and downs. People with strong EI would be able to differentiate between the external and internal factors – within or in the person causing the upset and thereby dealing with it. Motivation is equally important. Here the art lies in converting a negative behaviour or a situation into a positive one. Positivity plays a big role in EI. Getting rid of negativity is an art, if mastered can really help one cope with any eventuality in life. Social skills help us in our interpersonal interactions by helping us communicate effectively. Last but not the least, empathy – the capacity to understand other’s emotions and respond to them sympathetically helps. It’s like an elixir for any relationship malfunction. People who can empathize, who can put themselves into others’ shoes and feel their emotions are always at an advantage.
Human beings are designed to be social. We aren’t called social animals for nothing. Virtual connect can facilitate a strong connection to a point. It can also help one form a new connection and bond. But no relationship can last if it doesn’t have a physical contact – not literally but being physically with the people who matter.
If the above stated characteristics are imbibed and a deliberate effort is made to use these in our day to day interpersonal dealings, making new friends and maintaining relationships would no longer be challenging.
By bringing the EI core to the fore, I hope we eliminate our need to connect only virtually and be with our loved ones more…