It was a bad night. I stayed in bed remembering the nightmare that felt so real. I took my phone trying to direct my thoughts to a different topic. There it was, the baby claws, out of one of my WhatsAp messages. A colleague said I made her feel uncomfortable and asked that I rectify the situation. I quickly apologized and did what I could do about the situation. Of course I didn't see that coming. It wasn't on purpose either because I thought I was careful enough. I started feeling bad. From bad to terrible and from terrible to wallowing in my own guilt. My morning was ruined. I tried thinking of other things but failed.
My emotions were all over the place, with claws piercing down my heart and wings that make them fly beyond my reach. I had no control over my own emotions. I called myself to order. It has already happened, shake it off. It didn't work so I tried the "I don't care stuff". But that's not me, things just affect me too much. So I looked for something else to make me feel better-a book titled EMOTIONAL INTELLIGENCE for Dummies by Steven J. Stein, PHD. It's time to cut those wings, claws and horns before they cut me into pieces.
This post is about sharing a little of what I have learnt with you all. First of all let me say this, being book smart and emotionally intelligent are too different things. A person can be a book smart and yet so dumb when it comes to managing her emotions. Don't be surprised when you see politicians who have bagged lots of degrees and yet their utterances make you question their achievements.
Emotional intelligence is about recognizing your emotions and those of others, understanding and managing them. As long as we interact with others in society we have to check our emotions. With every single interaction, it's either you are building bonds of trust and love or breaking them.
Let me take you back to people who have badly hurt you and despite the gravity of the situation they don't even know they have wronged you. They just can't recognize other people's emotions. There are those who will know they wronged you and yet will just be around you as if nothing ever happened. Some people may disappear from your life for months and come back and demand to be treated as if they never left. I have a problem with that.
Emotional intelligence is about saying the right thing at the right time with the right demeanor to get the right result. Sometimes people with valuable information do not allow how to communicate them.
When I read to this point, I understood why the CID boss could say she knew the whereabouts of the missing Takoradi girls which was a fragrant lie.At this point I remembered the words of Senyo Hosi who although graduated from the university of Ghana, said the university is a "school of mediocrity" just because of poor planning of the 70th anniversary of the university. Then again I figured some people still listen to counselor Lutterodt while others will "describe" his mental and physical components to discredit him. Let the truth be told but emotional intelligence requires some level of sensitivity.
Being emotionally intelligent means being positive during difficult times and keeping calm under pressure. We all have power over our emotions and even though this looks impossible it is highly possible with practice.
I recently attended a graduation of a friend at the Ghana Military Academy. I went with a friend. Unfortunately my friend's sister was ill and so she was restless throughout the program. I asked her if she had any control over the situation and she said no. She made us leave the venue early so she could visit her sister. Before this, I sent someone to go and check on her sister just for her to relax.
En route there was a heavy rain and I got stuck since I did not carry an umbrella. I was getting frustrated then I remembered my words to my friend. "You don't have control over this situation". I laughed at myself and decided to calm down. When you are stuck in traffic and running late for that important function don't let it ruin your mood dear.
We all get angry, anxious, excited etc. When these emotions change the course of your day and affect your personal development know your emotions have developed wings. Try to identify the emotions you experience daily and map out those that give you positive and those that give you negative energy. Understand why these emotions make you feel the way you do and learn to manage them.
Emotional intelligence for dummies has a lot of exercises to help train your emotions. In my opinion it's a must read for everyone. It does not only help you as an individual but also your relationship with others, work, school and life as a whole.
Take control over your emotions, don't let your emotions control you.