Did you know that our emotions play an important role in the decisions we make in the workplace? From deciding how we approach tasks to how we respond to comments co-workers and bosses make, everyone taps into their emotional intelligence, which is also called EQ (emotional quotient).
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A lack of this kind of intelligence can sometimes lead to rash and rushed decisions, especially when we are feeling overwhelmed or stressed. At other times, EQ can allow us to make rational decisions using our emotions effectively, like empathizing with a customer’s perspective.
Symptoms of a Lack of Emotional Quotient and EQ Responses
Here are a few different scenarios where underutilizing our EQs can hurt our decision-making processes and how we can exercise our emotional intelligence to avoid falling into workplace burnout.
Symptom #1: You lack empathy toward your co-workers.
When we are feeling burned out, we tend to disregard the problems and situations our co-workers may be experiencing both at work and at home. They could have a sick child, have just lost a loved one, or be having challenges struggling to balance their career with their family life.
Not showing empathy can lead your co-workers to believe you do not care. This could cause them to feel a sense of resentment or even anger toward you.
EQ Response: The best way to exercise empathy is by putting yourself in the perspective of your co-worker. Even if you do not entirely understand what they are dealing with, you will at least be able to show them you are emotionally responsive and care.
Going a step further, learn the crucial skill of empathy. Empathy builds connection and understanding.
Symptom #2: You're not able to keep your emotions under control.
It's easy to let our emotions get the better of us when we are feeling burned out. We might make snap judgments, be moody, make derogatory comments, or blow up at co-workers or even our boss. This creates more stress and causes increased anxiety.
EQ Response: A good way to exercise more EQ in this situation is to learn how to express feelings in a productive and constructive manner. For instance, your boss informs you that the spreadsheet you just submitted is not what they wanted and to redo it. A burnout response would be to snap at your boss or walk off the job because you are fed up. A productive and constructive response would be to ask your boss what exactly he or she would like differently and what information they need to meet their expectations.
Deep Dive: "27 Best Ways to Raise Your Emotional Intelligence in the Workplace."
Symptom #3: You avoid conflict and comply even when it's unhealthy for you.
This type of burnout response can cause all sorts of problems and affect our emotional well-being. You disagree with a co-worker or your boss, yet, rather than confront them with your concerns, you go along with whatever they want or avoid interactions altogether.
EQ Response: It is much better to step back for a moment and take a look at the bigger picture. Avoidance when facing a problem can cost you. For instance, you agree and take on more work, work unrealistic hours, or miss time with your children. If this is the case, it's essential to speak up and object. It is perfectly acceptable to disagree as long as you work with the other person on reaching a mutually beneficial solution.
Related reading: "A New Book Reveals What Is Actually Causing Burnout."
Emotions and interpersonal relationships in the workplace are not something you can avoid. Learning how to address them effectively, even when we feel burned out, requires learning how to exercise our Emotional Quotient.
For guidance on learning how to prevent burnout and boost your emotional intelligence, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.