As part of my note taking in Emotional and Social Intelligence ESI (UC Davis) – a course I’m currently taking online. Here are the signs of a person, employee or co-worker with high EQ (emotional quotient) or EI (emotional intelligence).
But first we define Emotional Intelligence or EQ as the capacity to be aware of control and express your emotions as well as navigate interpersonal relationships with both good judgement and empathy.
EQ/EI affects every aspect in your life and has been proven to be in the top 10 most important workplace skills needed for success according to World Economic Forum (2020).
Studying Psychology shows you a myriad of complicated terms, endless name of disorders, personality types, etc. But let’s be practical here, everywhere you go there’s always a “toxic” person. They’re impossible to avoid, can give you negative feelings and worse affect your mental health.
But do you know that Toxic behavior is something that can manifest in us all?
We all have bad days but it is important to be aware of our actions and how they affect the people around us. “Self-awareness” – according to my professor and the author of best selling book Permission to feel – Marc Brackett, is the start of becoming an Emotional Scientist.
First, let us learn how to identify a toxic individual.
Being toxic is never fun to be around, you drive people away and usually encounter conflicts and misunderstandings. Keep in mind that these behaviors don’t happen overnight, it is developed through the years and has underlying causes or triggers like childhood trauma. They are actually unconscious and developed over time as their defense mechanism. Not an excuse though, that’s why we begin by realizing if our behavior is already hurting other people.
Ways not to be toxic.
1. Replace negative thoughts with positive ones
it all starts with your mind, your thoughts drive and guide how you behave.
Professor Marc Brackett said that our brain is hay wired to think negatively right away, it is our automatic way of thinking. This is not good for the body as it activates our limbic system.
Thinking positively takes time and lot of effort.
2. Be actively Grateful
When we practice gratitude, our feelings of accomplishment and satisfaction increase, and the feeling of burn-out decreases.
Toxic people are unhappy because they tend to look at the past and for them everything in their life is not good enough.
Take a few minutes everyday to be actively grateful. This could be anything from your pet, sunshine or good weather, family, or the roof above your head.
If you really want not to be toxic, know that acknowledging the good things in your life lets you focus on them and everything else seems brighter and happier.
3. Think before you react
build the habit of pausing before reacting.
toxic people are highly reactive, they tend to lash out on people around them.
this is the best time to practice being a better listener, so instead of reacting try to listen first.
being an active listener shows that you care.
4. Let your ego go
a toxic person is desperate to maintain a certain image to the point of attacking others, or being defensive and becoming a habitual liar.
they believe they’re entitled and people are beneath them.
accept that nobody’s perfect and that you’re not always correct.
kindness is free and without your ego this is easy.
5. Show accountability
this is related to ego, apologizing is like admitting defeat to a toxic person.
admitting you’ve made a mistake and taking responsibility makes it feel you’ve failed.
if you’re not able to be accountable for your own wrongdoing — if you dig in, and have to maintain your image — this is a big potential problem. For one, it’s a sign of narcissism.
it will be a struggle to maintain a real relationship to someone who can never ever accept fault. It makes other people uncomfortable, denies their emotions or needs, and leaves them feeling wronged too.
My husband watches back to back this drama and D&P. I watch this one with him out of curiosity. Though a little late as this was released last 2019. With casts – Lee Jung Jae, Shin Min ah (my fave), Lee Elijah and so forth and available in Netflix and other streaming sites.
Talks about corruption, abuse, death, etc. I like the characters of Lee Jung Jae as Jang Tae Jun (main role), Assemblyman Lee who fights tirelessly for justice, Kang Sun Yeong (played by Shin Min Ah). This series is intense and has exciting twists, portraying a society with real issues, depicting how world of politics really work.
Being married to a civil servant, I can see my husband in the roles of some characters who remain steadfast and principled through and through.
Anyways… if you want drama with realistic plot then you got it here.
One of the strongest typhoon hit Cebu province and nearby islands. Philippines is no stranger to typhoons, there are about 40 storms passing every year. And Odette has been the most destructive event since 2013 with Yolanda (typhoon Haiyan).
Odette was internationally known as Super typhoon Rai. It brought violent winds that destroy buildings and infrastructures, knocked down posts and uprooted trees. I personally witnessed the strong winds rampaging our compound and we could hear the howling, roof flying and tiles being thrown around.
In my calendar, I marked that day, it was Thursday. We were supposed to close the store in the usual hour – 10pm. But due to the scary weather forecast, we are forced to close by 3pm. I remember clearly that the wind started to become stronger around 5-6pm. The peak was around 7-8pm and electricity was out by 9pm.
I have not seen such catastrophe and it’s like we were brought down to our knees to beg God for mercy. Thankfully, there was minimal damage in our property. But problems persist due to electricity outage. We lived through 6-7 weeks of no light. Water was also scarce, there was long queue in gasoline and water refilling stations everywhere. As if a doomsday scenario, and no this is not an exaggeration.
We witnessed first hand the wrath of Odette and it changed our perspective in life. Due to lack of water, we cherished every drop and bathed using one pail each. Signal was very bad and I wasn’t able to contact my family in Manila for the first 3 days. We lived one day at a time, everything was a challenge including cooking. That prompted me to try intermittent fasting. The inconveniences were too much, many people lost their houses and worst their loved ones.
Still grateful for the people who checked on us and some even offered to send help, I remember them all. My recollection especially during struggles and emotional incidents is at its height. Wishing to repay them someday. Kindness really is contagious.
Months after, and nightmare is almost forgotten but the lessons I’ve learned and the experiences are etched in my memory. I thank the Lord for all of these and for thriving with only our faith as lifeline.
There’s one Kdrama that is hands down the ultimate tearjerker. No episode that I didn’t tear up, but this is not to discourage you from watching it.
I got the idea of adding this Kdrama to my playlist by Seungkwan of Seventeen. What a perfect timing that I’m into Psychology and currently studying online. The light in your eyes in my opinion depicts areas in psychology such as anxiety, trauma, dementia (alzheimer) and was beautifully portrayed in the story of it’s main characters. Not here to leave a review but I’ll be sharing the ending quotation which is really motivating and uplifting.
In my Positive Psychology class by University of Pennsylvania, we are asked to take the VIA Character Strengths. Unlike the popular MBTI, this test is about character, our signature strengths. If you are curious to take it, link is here. It is free with a payment option for extra features.
Big 5 Character Traits
Allow me to share the results of mine –
According to VIA Survey:
Spirituality (transcendence) – having coherent beliefs about the higher purpose and meaning of the universe; knowing where one fits within the larger scheme; having beliefs about the meaning of life that shape conduct and provide comfort.
Honesty (courage) – speaking the truth but more broadly presenting oneself in a genuine way and acting in a sincere way; being without pretense; taking responsibility for one’s feelings and actions.
Appreciation of Beauty & Excellence (transcendence) – noticing and appreciating beauty, excellence, and/or skilled performance in various domains of life, from nature to art to mathematics to science to everyday experience
Fairness (justice) – treating all people the same according to notions of fairness and justice; not letting feelings bias decisions about others; giving everyone a fair chance.
Curiosity(wisdom) – taking an interest in ongoing experience for its own sake; finding subjects and topics fascinating, exploring and discovering.
Remember that there’s no right or wrong answer. And your character strengths are key elements to living an authentic and meaningful life. Research shows that people who use their strengths are 18 times more likely to be flourishing than those who do not. By knowing and using your characters can help you be happier and more confident, improve areas in your life (relationships), and manage problems and stress.
VIA Character Survey
Positive Psychology by Prof. Martin Seligman (Father of Positive Psychology – University of Pennsylvania)
Help fight Depression and watch for signs listed below. The DSM-5 outlines the following criterion to make a diagnosis of depression. The individual must have at least 5 or more of these symptoms for a minimum of 2 weeks.
1. Sad mood most of the day, nearly everyday 2. Loss of interest (hallmark of MDD) 3. Significant weight loss/gain 4. Sleep disturbance 5. Psychomotor slowness – slowing down of thought and a reduction of physical movement 6. Fatigue 7. Feelings or worthlessness, low self esteem 8. Indecisive and not being able to focus 9. Thoughts of suicide or death and/ or a suicidal attempt.
I’ve faced criticisms my entire life. Prior to taking Psychology, I’m already curious about dealing with people – particularly “difficult” people.
But beyond and above scientific knowledge and strategies is the grace and word of God.
Let me share this with you, this has helped me a lot…
Caring for what others think of you stops us from doing God’s will. You’ll be distracted, occupied and worst be frozen in fear.
I want to also remind you that there are mean people in this world. (a.k.a. haters) Don’t allow people to hurt you with negative words toward you. Their words are irrelevant. You are fearfully and wonderfully made. God thinks good thoughts about you so think good thoughts about yourself as well.
I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Psalm 139:14 NIV
For God gave us a spirit not of fear but of power and love and self-control. 2 Timothy 1:7 ESV
Do not judge or you too will be judged. For in the same way you judge others, you will be judged, and with the measure you use, it will be measured to you. Matthew 7:1-2 NIV
It is dangerous to be concerned with what others think of you, but if you trust the Lord, you are safe. Proverbs 29:25
The Lord does not see as mortals see; they look on the outward appearance, but the Lord looks on the heart.”
As defined by Wikipedia; refers to a deliberate state of psychological or spiritual calm despite the potential presence of stressors. 1
Being at “peace” is considered by many to be healthy, good for the body and soul. It is something we all seek and surely one thing money cannot buy. Even billionaires & the most influential people like Steve Jobs tried to search for peace, it was evident in his statements.
“my favorite things in life don’t cost any money. It is really clear that the most precious resource we all have is time.”
“your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life.”
“being the richest man in the cemetery doesn’t matter to me. Going to bed at night saying we’ve done something wonderful, that matters to me.”
I have shared this before & I’m saying this again, the key to inner peace is faith. It took me countless uphill battles & several deaths in my family to finally came down to my knees, recognizing that all I need is Jesus. Nothing / no-one can help me bear the pain but him who suffered with us, for us…
“Don’t be afraid for I am with you. Don’t be discouraged for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you. I will hold you up with my victorious right hand.”
The recent sudden deaths of my brother and less than a year after my father – devastated me. I stopped praying for a while, like “doubtful Thomas” yearning for answers on why awful things happened to me. Yes, I tasted great sorrow, grief, scrutiny and defeats, but knowing that we have Jesus in our weakest is our greatest gift.
There’s this awesome book I’ve been reading lately. Sharing the prayer below. With title – “The Stress Cure” by Linda Evans Shepherd.
Quoting her, “I wondered why I’d allowed yesterday’s stress to block God’s peace, peace I could have had today…
Though we can’t control all the things that happen to us, we can, with God’s help, control our reaction to them – trusting God even when we’re stressed.”
The path to peace is simple – faith. It all starts there, peace leads to better health, then happiness and contentment. I’ve taken many herbal supplements to lessen my symptoms. Eventually, I realised that no matter how many ounces of medicine you take, if you’re under tremendous perpetual stress, it is useless and effect is just momentarily. Taking supplements coupled with intense faith & belief that you will be healed – that is power!
Let me now share the prayer;
I need you to walk through the walls of my doubt and unbelief. I choose to believe in You, that you are alive! Give me supernatural belief so that I can see you clearly. You died on the cross for my sins and came back to life again. Because you took my punishment, I can now walk with God.
I turn from my sins and turn to you, to follow you and to trust you with my whole heart. Please forgive me for my past and let your Spirit come so I can learn to walk in your peace.