Jennifer walked out of her meeting and thought,

Boy I didn’t see that coming. How could I have missed how upset my boss was with my work?

Bob was talking to a friend, feeling discouraged that his marriage was so problematic.

“My wife says I don’t pay attention to her needs or feelings. I am at a loss as to what to do or what she really means.”

What both of these people have in common is an inability to read people and know how to use and manage their emotions. They are both cognitively smart, but need to work on their emotional intelligence. Emotional intelligence is our ability to recognize, understand and use our emotions and also recognize the emotions of others that influence our relationships.

In order to begin to assess your emotional intelligence, answer yes or no to each question.

1. When your partner does something that bothers you, do you think, there must be a good reason for this. I am sure we can work it out?

2.  Are you free to express your dreams, values and viewpoints?

3.  Do you manage your emotions during conflict and try to understand what is happening?

4. When distressed, are you able to talk about your fears and worries?

5.  Can you calm yourself down when you feel defensive and believe your partner may feel attacked too?

6.  When an argument is repeated, do you think about what the bigger issue may be?

7.  No matter how distressed or conflicted, do you maintain connection with your partner?

8. Do you regularly tell your partner how much he or she is appreciated?

9. Do you show on-going interest in what your partner says?

10. Do  you both have common goals, dreams and hopes?

If you answered yes to most of these questions, congratulations! You are doing great at making your relationship work using your emotional intelligence! If your answers fall more to the no responses, listen to our show to better understand what emotional intelligence is and how to build it.

Are you emotionally intelligent?