Our senses can quickly get the best of us if we don’t check in with them often. Sometimes, gaining control and not letting our emotions completely dominate our lives can be challenging.
But people with high emotional intelligence have thought about what drives their emotions. This helps them in situations where emotions tend to overdrive.
Those with high emotional intelligence communicate more effectively, adapt to change, manage stress and conflict productively, build stronger relationships, and perform better at work.
Of course, anyone can improve their emotional intelligence with practice and dedication, but knowing how to do it seems like a mystery to many. With that said, knowing what people are emotionally avoiding might be a better starting point.
Here are five things that people with high emotional intelligence should avoid:
1. They don’t let their emotions rule entirely their lives
People with high emotional intelligence understand the importance of letting their feelings show, but they don’t let them lead their lives. They know we wouldn’t be human without emotions, but those emotions don’t have to dictate every second of our lives.
They take a few deep breaths and travel inward to understand what these feelings want them to take away from the situation. Then they allow their rational thinking to balance their emotional intelligence. Emotions drive much of our existence as humans, but they don’t have to control us or define who we are.
2. Emotionally intelligent people do not blame others
Above all, emotionally intelligent people take responsibility for their feelings. They do not blame others for any situation or event; they are entirely in control of their emotions and can admit when they are wrong.
People with high emotional intelligence know that playing the blame game only pushes them farther in life and puts them in a victim mentality. Emotionally intelligent people understand that no one can make them feel a certain way; they decide what feelings they are experiencing at any given moment.
3. People with emotional intelligence do not hide their feelings for fear of what others might think
Emotionally intelligent people don’t let their feelings run wild and take over completely, but they don’t hide them either. They know that if they store their feelings in a deep, dark place, they will only fade into the background later because emotions must ebb and flow like your own breath.
You wouldn’t hold your breath forever for fear of letting it out. So why do you feel the same way? Emotionally intelligent people don’t give up on their emotions; they express them to release this burden and continue their lives healthily.
4. They don’t say yes unless they want to
Research at the University of California, San Francisco, shows that the harder it is to say no, the more stress, burnout, and even depression. Saying “no” is hard for most people. “No” is a powerful word you shouldn’t be afraid to use.
When it’s time to say no, emotionally intelligent people avoid saying things like, “I don’t think so” or “I’m not sure.” Saying “no” to a new commitment frees up your existing obligations and allows you to fulfill them successfully.
5. People with emotional intelligence do not apologize for their feelings
Emotionally intelligent people understand that even though they are highly aware of their emotions, this does not exclude them from being part of humanity.
They understand that they do not have superhuman abilities that allow them not to feel pain, hurt, and sadness. Instead, they accept it and let go of negative feelings when necessary.
When they feel these feelings, they also feel happiness and joy. This is because they know that life works through ups and downs.
All emotions serve as lessons for us in the grand scheme of things. They do not feel sorry for their feelings. Instead, they know that feelings come from the heart and that the heart will always express itself honestly and fairly.
6. People with high emotional intelligence do not seek happiness; they create
People with high emotional intelligence do not beg, claw, or fight to find happiness. They do not demand life because they know life does not owe them anything. They owe it to the universe to create their good and joy, so they seek happiness only within.
After they clear themselves and understand what makes their heart beat every day, they live with that purpose and let their light shine. People with high emotional intelligence know that they won’t just stumble upon happiness; they understand that the journey to joy means nothing if you cannot enjoy it.
Therefore, they have developed enough positive energy to perceive all life as a beautiful, sacred blessing.
7. They don’t let anyone limit their joy
When pleasure and satisfaction come from comparing yourself to others, you are no longer the master of your happiness. When emotionally intelligent people feel good about something they’re doing, they won’t let anyone’s opinion or accomplishments take that away from them.
While turning off your reactions to what other people think of you is impossible, you don’t have to compare yourself to others. You can always take people’s opinions with a grain of salt.
So, you have self-worth regardless of what others think or do. No matter what people think of you at any moment, one thing is for sure — you are never as good or as bad as they say.
8. They do not allow negative self-talk
A critical step in building emotional intelligence is to stop negative self-talk. Negative thoughts and feelings cause untold damage, and the more you dwell on them, the more power they gain over you. These negative thoughts can create stress, reduce motivation, and even lead to depression if left unchecked.
Emotionally intelligent people know this fact and can curb negative thoughts such as “I can’t do this” or “I should have done better.” They don’t let their irrational thoughts take over their emotions and know how to focus.
Even if they make mistakes and experience setbacks, they learn from them and move forward without losing their self-worth.
9. They will not hang around negative people
Complainers are wrong because they don’t care about solving problems. They want people to join their bittersweet party to feel better about themselves. People often feel they pressured to listen to complainers because they don’t want to be perceived as uncaring or rude.
But there’s a fine line between lending a sympathetic ear and feeding them into their negative emotional spiral. You don’t have to be involved just by setting limits and putting yourself aside when necessary. Think about it: what if a smoker sat there all afternoon inhaling secondhand smoke?
You could walk away from yourself. You should do the same with complainants. The best way to set limits is to ask the complainants how they intend to solve the problem. After that, the complainer will either calm down or direct the conversation in a productive direction.
10. They avoid conflicts
Emotionally intelligent people do not waste their time and energy arguing or creating conflicts. Instead, they focus on positive interactions. Unnecessary disagreements and friction can lead to stress and anxiety, leaving you vulnerable to high blood pressure, headaches, and decreased focus.
However, emotionally intelligent people are significantly less likely to have this happen. They choose to manage their emotions and empathize during difficult conversations. They don’t let their frustration or anger affect their actions.
While it’s important to stand up for yourself and be straightforward in your communication, it’s wise to avoid getting into a conflict that doesn’t go anywhere. Emotionally intelligent people are smart in choosing their battles.