People Who Have Emotional Intelligence Tend To Have These 7 Habits

People Who Have Emotional Intelligence Tend To

In today’s fast-paced world, emotional intelligence (EQ) is more critical than ever—especially in environments requiring high-stress management and team collaboration. This is particularly true for those in leadership positions. But what habits do people who have emotional intelligence tend to practice?

High Self-Awareness

People who have emotional intelligence tend to be acutely aware of their emotions, strengths, weaknesses, and triggers. This self-awareness allows them to navigate complex situations calmly, make informed decisions, and know how they impact other people. This includes knowing their emotions as they happen, rather than only in hindsight. Knowing your emotions as they arise is a crucial skill that helps emotionally intelligent people manage their emotions as key pieces of data and actively choose the behaviors that will lead to more positive results for themselves and others. 

Empathy and Social Awareness

 People who have emotional intelligence tend to possess a deep understanding of others’ emotions, moods, and tendencies for behavior as they interact with them. This core workplace competency fosters an inclusive and motivating environment. This also helps to connect with team members on a deeper level, improving collaboration and engagement, and infuses the workplace with more humanness. Central to our ability to empathize with others is to be able to observe them more accurately, beyond surface-level observations. While this requires more work and time, emotionally intelligent people know the enormous payoff of the effort.  

    Effective Communication

    Their ability to communicate clearly, listen actively, and understand non-verbal cues sets them apart. By utilizing emotional intelligence in their communication, they can build trust, resolve conflicts, and maintain strong relationships. This means emotionally intelligent people are open and curious, tackle tough conversations well, and hold space for people when this is needed. Communication, in other words, is not only about how articulate we are in work meetings or presentations. It is also paramount that we know when to listen actively and simply be present for others who need it. To be clear, our ability to discern what is needed in any given situation – with any given individual – is also rooted in our emotional intelligence.

    Mastery in Relationship Management

    People who have emotional intelligence tend to excel in inspiring, motivating, and empowering their teams. They are adept at providing constructive feedback, managing difficult conversations with empathy, and cultivating a positive work culture. These outcomes are founded on our ability to manage relationships. Emotionally intelligent people can intentionally work to identify and meet the needs involved in a relationship. Specifically, these include 3 sets of needs: (1) your needs, (2) the other person’s needs, and (3) the higher-order needs of the relationships – or, what’s required of you both to be successful in this situation and more generally in the relationship.

    Proactive Self-Assessment and Development

    They continuously assess and develop their emotional intelligence, using tools like the Emotional Intelligence Appraisal®. This commitment to growth ensures they remain effective leaders and team players. Emotional intelligence is dynamic and we must maintain the practice. What works in one situation (or with one individual) may not work as effectively with another. Regular and intentional EQ development will keep us fresh and help sharpen our EQ skills to take on whatever change is around the corner.

    Commitment to EQ Training

    Engaging in regular emotional intelligence training helps them refine their skills. This training often includes practical exercises, case studies, and role-plays to simulate real-world scenarios. Practice is key. Like any skill, emotional intelligence is developed over time and with intentional effort. Likewise, the more dormant these skills become, the more our EQ can atrophy like a muscle. To work out our EQ skills regularly, we can commit to strategy practice across situations in our lives.

    Seeking Coaching and Mentorship

    Understanding the value of guidance, emotionally intelligent people seek coaching and mentoring to enhance their awareness and management skills. This support helps them apply EQ concepts effectively in their personal and professional lives and holds them accountable to sustain the practice.

    Bringing It All Together 

    People with high emotional intelligence stand out for their ability to understand and manage emotions—both their own and those of others. By adopting these seven habits, anyone can enhance their EQ and become a more effective leader, team member, and contributor.

    By Josh Rosenthal, Director of Training for TalentSmartEQ. For more information, please check out additional resources at:

    These strategies were adapted from the new book, “Emotional Intelligence Habits” by Dr. Travis Bradberry. To order, click here. For more strategies that can help you improve engagement at your organization, check out our training programs or contact us.

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