Does Meditation Increase Emotional Intelligence?

Meditation is an age-old practice used by Hindus and Buddhist monks to control their minds for purposeful living as part of the path towards “Nirvana”. The state of Nirvana is said to be the highest state of consciousness and emotional intelligence. Of late, meditative techniques have spread globally, and are used in non-spiritual contexts, such as business and health.

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Meditation increases the emotional intelligence of a person, by increasing the self-awareness, social awareness, inner peace, perception, and self-concept. Many psychiatrists and clinical psychologists around the world use this technique to effectively treat psycho-somatic disorders in their chronically ill patients.

Meditation is important in improving self-awareness

Meditation trains your mind to focus on the present moment. Through meditation and mindfulness, you become aware of your thoughts and physical presence. The self-awareness would make you aware of other people’s feelings and motives, you will become more socially aware. In an unaware mind, the negative emotions of hate, fear and anger can easily be triggered. These negative emotions can be curbed at once by changing your thoughts consciously to more positive emotions like forgiveness, acceptance and love. This will help to improve self-control and self-management.

Meditation is important for achieving success

The meditative mind allows you to concentrate on your task at hand, thus helps you to perform better. The better performance will ensure better work quality, better work quality will get you better success. If you are working with a meditative mind, you will work with your optimum speed, that may seem slow initially because your mind and body would work in unison under absolute voluntary control, you will make less mistakes, need less rework, and would get your job right every time.

Being aware of your emotions, your actions and your surroundings ensure that your mind and body are synchronized and work in harmony, this would make all your actions graceful and you would appropriately respond to the situation rather than react. To give you an example of mind and body control, imagine a dancer, dancing gracefully with abandon synchronized to the beat of the music.  A good dancer can perform gracefully, only when the mind and body are in complete harmony to both actions and emotions. The meditative state of high emotional intelligence is profoundly noticeable in all great athletes, actors, and world leaders. Their body and mind work in harmony, and that is the reason, they are highly successful in their respective field of work and also, appear graceful in all their actions. 

How can you train your mind and body to achieve a constant meditative state?

These are a few simple techniques that can be mastered with little practice so that you form a habit of keeping your mind and body in synchronized harmony.

1. Slow down

The mind runs many times faster than the body can cope up with. So, to get your mind and body in harmony, slow down your actions.  

You must have noticed some people who are hurried in life. They talk with urgency, walk with urgency, all their actions seem fast and out of sync. They are ambitious, yet do not achieve much success. They try harder, their actions become more urgent and more out of sync, they are irritable and quick to anger, are generally avoided and disliked by people, thus further moving away from any possible success.

You must learn from them. Do not do what they are doing. Talk slowly, make deliberate actions, prioritize your work, focus on one task at a time. Humans are not wired to multi-task. You will be more successful in your life as a result of tackling one thing at a time. Doing only one task at a time with complete focus and undivided attention will ensure a very high quality of work produced by you. You will be more organized, more productive, more liked by people and thus more successful in life. Osho calls it “Work as Meditation”.

2. Eat slowly, eat less and eat with awareness

Next time when you eat, make your servings smaller than you normally would like, take small bites, chew your food slowly, enjoy every morsel with gastronomic orgasm.

When you eat less, the stomach would feel less bloated, you consume less calories, when you eat slowly, you are giving more time for digestive enzymes to act on your food. Your satiety would be higher, will be more alert and would be able to work with awareness. In Hinduism, there is a ritual for fasting. Some staunch devotees fast once in a week and they are found to be healthier and more energetic in life. “Eat like you are meditating”.

3. Make every action deliberate

Notice successful people around you, their actions are deliberate and not hurried. They walk with confidence in the office, they talk coherently, slowly and clearly, they take their time to arrive at decisions, and they usually focus on one thing at a time. So, making all your actions deliberate and in sync with your mind and body would emit positive aura around you, you would appear more confident and thus you would be perceived as a person with his/her life in control.

4. Talk less & listen more

The highly elevated Hindu and Buddhist monks keep a vow of silence at least once a week. That day, they do not speak. This vow of silence enables them to communicate using their other bodily senses like vision, hearing, smell, and touch to sharpen their awareness and their sensations. The successful people with high emotional intelligence rarely speak. They listen to you with complete focus and attention. When you dispassionately listen to any person with attention, the person feels wanted and cared for. You need not commit anything or say a word. Whenever you talk, talk slowly and deliberately, you are less likely to be misquoted and misjudged.

5. Respond only after a brief pause and never immediately

In life, sometimes there would be instances that would seem urgent; however, nothing is urgent that cannot wait a few seconds to get your mind and body in harmony.

The other person has hurried it because they are out of control of their emotions and genuinely need help. Listen to them, if you must answer, remember to respond and not react. Say a person snaps back at you for some reason, for example, or is pestering you to make an urgent decision or commitment, do not react immediately. Hear them out patiently and then put your point across. This way, you will gain time to assess the situation correctly, gather your thoughts, and then respond appropriately befitting the circumstances.

6. Exercise regularly but vigorously

There are many ways to meditate and each has the same goal, that is, to stop the flow of involuntary thoughts by making you mind blank. The blank mind is a fertile ground to reinforce positive emotions and visualization while boosting your ability of manifestation. 

You can do some vigorous exercise even at home. All you need to do is jump up and down to get the blood flowing, Osho, a famous Indian guru, had designed a similar meditation. Part of the meditation involves jumping up and down with abandon for 20 minutes, followed by lying down still and being aware of your breathing for ten minutes. Jumping up & down serves as good cardio exercise and if done vigorously, would facilitate a meditative state, with your mind blank of any thoughts. 

7. Be aware of your breathing

Breathing and heartbeats are two involuntary movements that happen inside our body autonomously. A good way to meditate and control your mind and get your mind and body in sync is being aware of your breathing. When you breathe with awareness, you will take deeper breaths, this deep breathing would enable the body to relax. Relaxation is the aim of meditation.

Unlike intelligence quotient (IQ), people are not born with an emotional intelligence OR emotional quotient (EQ). The emotional intelligence develops over a period due to environmental factors like upbringing and education.Meditation and awareness, if incorporated in daily routine would give instant positive results. You must make all efforts to bring your body and mind in harmony, so that you are graceful in your actions and respond appropriately to the situation.. Slow down, take time to live and enjoy, you will achieve more than you could by being hurried and irritable.

Tommy P.
Tommy P.

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