Gratitude is integral to our Emotional Intelligence!

Gratitude is integral to our Emotional Intelligence!

Gratitude plays a huge role in relation to emotional intelligence.

Before we dive in though we need to start by clarifying what they are.

We know that gratitude is a positive reaction to an act of kindness. Until recently gratitude has always been seen as a passive reaction to our environment, that said, the classical poet John Milton said:

"Gratitude bestows reverence, allowing us to encounter everyday epiphanies, those transcendent moments of awe that change forever how we experience life and the world."

For centuries we have been aware of the power of gratitude as a force of positivity but using it as a proactive force is a recent discovery!

Emotional Intelligence is defined as the ability to understand and manage your own emotions, as well as recognize and influence the emotions of those around you.

With the rise in popularity of emotional intelligence, gratitude has been linked to neural activity associated with moral cognition, perspective-taking and fairness.

Studies continue to show that gratitude builds and strengthens relationships and makes us more empathetic. Implementing practices of gratitude makes us more aware of our emotions, helps us to focus on our strengths and helps us to understand others more fully.

Our emotional intelligence is bolstered through the power of gratitude. It aids us in reflecting on our feelings and emotions and helps us to focus on our goals and those of others.

Emotional intelligence is often split into several key areas; self-awareness, self-regulation, social skills, empathy and motivation. Gratitude plays a huge role in each of these areas.

With self-awareness, gratitude increases our awareness of positive emotions such as optimism, ambition, authenticity, confidence, integrity, open mindedness, resilience and strategic thinking. It helps us to focus on these emotions in order to reach our targets, objectives and life goals.

An increased self-awareness has a domino effect on our self-management; it gives us a more positive outlook, helps us to look at situations more objectively and helps us to take responsibility and be more accountable. It will help us to receive and act on feedback more readily.

We will realise that we are continuously learning, and it will enable us to make more effective decisions. Having a positive mindset will make delegation easier because we will be able to trust our co-workers. This will be good for the whole team's mental health.

Gratitude increases our compassion and empathy, by training us to actively listen to others and encourage them to believe that their actions are appreciated and validated.

Gratitude raises our aw​​areness of our purpose in life, it improves self-care, and gives us the opportunity to use our strengths at the optimum level!

Practising deep gratitude will make us more socially aware. It will make us more empathetic as we will be in tune with those around us, and more connected to our co-workers and the situations we find ourselves in.

We can use all these things to build and strengthen our relationships. This will build trust and help us to set realistic, achievable goals. It will also help our leadership style become more transparent.

Gratitude acts as a displacement activity, replacing a negative mindset with a much more positive one. It regulates our thought patterns and makes us focus on what is going well, and what positive emotions we are experiencing.

Gratitude improves our social skills by encouraging more prosocial and less anti-social behaviour.

Gratitude creates time and space; it helps us to take a step back from our daily routine and view our lives through a new, more positive perspective. It makes us focus on what we are grateful for. We will start to seek out moments to reflect on what is positive in ourselves and in others.

If we live in a positive present moment, we will bolster our emotional intelligence on every level and lead happier, more fulfilled lives!