From Instagram, to TikTok, to Twitter posts, our society is becoming more self-focused at an ever increasing rate. We now have more access to each other than ever before, with each of us carrying a phone on us all the time and having a multitude of avenues to communicate, nevertheless many of us feel less actual connection than ever before. While we are constantly aware of the number of likes or the number of followers, we aren’t spending nearly enough time interacting in meaningful ways; ways that cause us to shift the focus to others, rather than ourselves.
This fairly new, but rapidly growing trend is doing us no favors when it comes to our mental and emotional health. Especially in the wake of pandemic-induced isolation, our replacement of face-to-face interactions with virtual ones, is not only causing us to be more depressed and more narcissistic, but in some ways we’re also just more stupid.
These all important, real, meaningful, social interactions are what helps us to develop a higher level of emotional intelligence, which could arguably be the most valuable kind of intelligence there is. Not only does emotional intelligence play a pivotal role in our personal lives and relationships, but it also plays an enormous role in our career success.
For instance, just one point increase in emotional intelligence typically adds an additional $1300 to an individual’s annual income. Not only that, but 90% of the top performing employees also have a high level of emotional intelligence.
The most effective leaders are also high on the emotional intelligence scale. These leaders are able to engage with their employees. They motivate them and encourage them to do more than what they believed they could. In the end, this leads to better employee retention, higher level of productivity, and more creativity within the company. Naturally, this kind of company culture also translates to better customer retention and higher profits.
At the end of the day, regardless of your level of education or IQ, emotional intelligence is the thing that drives the ship forward and creates our successes.