People are different. One person may see the situation one way, and the other person might perceive the same situation a very different way. Social intelligence is, among others, the ability to see things from the other person’s viewpoint, paving us the way to successful social environments.
As in any other case, there is no golden recipe to become socially intelligent from one day to another, but there are a few steps to mark the beginning. We summarized seven tips herebelow:
- Be aware of your inner language: You communicate far more than what you say. Study your micro-expressions and gestures, in order to be aware of how you truly respond to others.
- View others as humans, rather than objects: Meeting a friend should not be an item on your ‘to-do’ list, but a true desire instigated by empathy. Don’t interact because you ‘should.’
- Watch out the ‘post-mortem’: After a business meeting or a date, spend some minutes to reflect what went right and wrong, advises psychologist Dr. Daniel Goleman. Prioritizing your Social Intelligence is a vital step in order to enhance it!
- Value compassion over empathy: Empathy typically implicates the empathizer in feelings that are not their own. Compassion means to understand the other’s feelings without adopting the emotion.
- Friends make you healthy: Positive relationships are the prescription for the best immune system and a long happy life. Investing in your loved ones is something you will not regret.
- Identify toxic people: Our brain unconsciously copies the others’ behaviors and emotions. ‘Others exist to adore me’ is the summarized moto of psychopaths and narcissistic personalities. Stay away!
- Validate the others’ feelings for you: Instead of trying to explain to someone why their feelings for you are illogical, accept them and work to make them see things more clearly.
When we focus on others, our world expands. Our own problems drift to the periphery of the mind and so seem smaller, and we increase our capacity for connection.
-Dr. Goleman, ‘Social Intelligence: The New Science of Human Relationships’.