According to Daniel Goldman, emotional intelligence (EI) is a personality trait that depicts the individual’s ability to regulate emotions, be aware of his/her own self in relation to others, be emphatic with others, have social skills, and high level of self-motivation. It is the ability to comfortably relate to others while being comfortable with your own self.

Much has been written on strategies to reduce stress. Many of them focus on cognitive re-appraisal, breathing relaxation, and meditation. Although there is no one strategy that is irreplaceable, emotional intelligence embraces the core aspects of a human being. Relatedness, being able to listen without judgment, and create the emotional space for dialogue are human conditions that make relationships more vivid and authentic. It promotes understanding without having to agree with the other person. It leads to having greater compassion.

Stress is a very useful human response. Without it, we would not be able to react to threats and the human specie would have disappeared long time ago. However, it is also true that the human body is not organized to remain in an acute state of alertness throughout the entire day. The body eventually gives up by sending physical symptoms as a sign of being worn out.

Much of what we try to do is managing stress to the best of our abilities. Often time, we get irritated over events that have not even taken place, yet. However, in our mind we begin to negatively envision the worse possible scenarios.

Developing a high level of emotional intelligence has a huge benefit toward managing stress. Rather than being isolated, keeping thoughts and/or fears to oneself, reacting in anger toward others, and expecting people to behave differently, a developed emotional intelligence facilitates the ability to be more collaborative and reflective in order to effectively respond to the needs of the moment.

Raise your emotional intelligence and reduce your stress levels.

1. Push yourself to do something that has been lingering for a while. The most important challenges in your life are worth pursuing and all the effort will be well rewarded.

2. Take your time to respond when in a stress situation. Most likely, the moment will soon pass or its intensity diminish enough. A quick reaction will only lead to more stress and conflict.