Mark Zuckerberg, Evan Spiegel and Bill Gates all certainly have high IQs. However, it is not the only thing that helps them ensure their success.

Emotional intelligence, also known as EQ, contributes a full 58 percent of success in all type of jobs, according to TalentSmart, a premiere provider of emotional intelligence.

“Emotional intelligence is your ability to recognize and understand emotions in yourself and others, and your ability to use this awareness to manage your behavior and relationships,” Dr. Travis Bradberry and Dr.Jean Greaves said in their book Emotional Intelligence 2.0.

Today, emotional intelligence is an important skill for everybody hoping to be successful in their career and social life.

“It’s the capacity to connect with others, either in friendship, in families, or in professional settings, in a way that enables everyone to feel respected, valued and appreciated.” said Plattsburgh State Director of Career Development Center Julia Overton-Healy.

“For example, if you feel there is tension in a situation, you can sense it and then choose appropriate actions to help de-escalate the tension,” she said.

Being the director of Career Development Center, Overton-Healy helps many students with their future career and success.

“Emotional intelligence is observable when you see other people who are comfortable in conversation with others —a wide variety of others.” she said.

Overton-Healy pointed out the qualities of a person with high emotional intelligence. She said people with high emotional intelligences were all great listeners and also respectful of personal space.

“Emotional intelligence is very culturally based, though,” she said. “Americans are often expressive and loud, and we tend to disclose way too much personal information in comparison to some other cultures.”

Therefore, she said people with superior emotional intelligence were able to navigate across cultural norms and adapt. In addition, Overton-Healy believes emotional intelligence is something everybody has the capacity for, and some people are just better at it due to socialization.

“Emotional intelligence, or social skills as you refer to them, are simply the essential tools to develop good relationships with others,” she said.

She emphasized that without good relationships, everything in life is much harder and more complicated.

“Imagine if you had no friends with whom to share life’s disappointments and joys; imagine if you had no loved ones to care for and help and support; imagine if you had no one on which to rely,” Overton-Healy said.

Once again, she said careers were not all about the work or the tasks but they were also about the people you work with, and for and those who work for you.

“To me, it is all about trying to understand people and to manage your emotions and behavior in different situations,” said freshman biology major Tshering Dama Dorji. “To be successful, we should know how to react to other people in an effective way.”

Tshering finds emotional intelligence important in life because she believes in a good working environment. She said people always have to be social, and deal with others. In addition, she said having a good social skill would definitely help everybody build strong relationships with others, which is a vital part to be successful in life.

“People should have certain control of how we react to things,” psychology associate professor Dr. Dale Phillips said.

He said in order to successfully work in a professional environment, people need to know how to manage their own emotional response to situations.

“For example, you cannot hide in your office just because you have anxiety about something,” he said. “You need to keep control of yourself in an objective way.”

Beside self-management, he said that all people have empathy. Furthermore, he believes they can see how other people are feeling and have a certain level of sympathy for their feeling.

“Some people think that emotional intelligence is a skill that we were born with,” he said. “Some people feels it is an ability that you can improve over time.”

Phillips said everybody should try to be aware of their own emotions.

“Start looking into words and ask yourself how you are feeling and why you are feeling this,” he said. “Try to get some control over it.”

He also said people tend to feel emotionally the way they are acting. For example, he said if they acted sad, they would feel sad, and if they acted angry, they would feel angry.

“One of the best things you can do is to try to do things that make you happy even if you do not feel like it,” Phillips said.

Email Hilly Nguyen at cp@cardinalpointsonline.com

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