6 Emotional Intelligence Skills That Can Improve The Quality of Your Life

By Marane Plaza

What separates successful, well-rounded and happy people from the rest is emotional mastery. Most of us were programmed in such a way that we do not realize that our success in relationships and career all come down to how well we handle our emotions. 

Uncontrollable impulses, mood swings, as well as negative emotions such as fear, doubt, anxiety and anger have a tendency of being volatile which can impact the quality of our lives. When you work on skills that improve your emotional mastery, your self-concept will not be easily affected by other people’s opinion of you,and you would not allow your well-being to depend on other people’s behavior towards you. 

Here are some emotional skills that you should consciously and actively work on to maintain a healthy well-being:

Working on self-awareness

This is really the mother of all the other emotional skills because you cannot control what you’re not aware of. Unconscious people interpret situations through the veil of their mental and emotional conditioning. And our lack of awareness of this conditioning from our upbringing makes us unable to differentiate between what is, and our own interpretation of it.

Only when we become more aware of our emotional and mental conditioning that we are able to see things for what they really are. Through this, we are then able to separate our own perception of things. We are then able to have a more realistic assessment of any given situation by simply being more aware of our conditioning.

When we have better self-awareness, our actions no longer have to be dictated by temporary emotional or mental states, but rather can be based on an unfiltered and more accurate perception based on reality. In other words, through developing awareness, we will be able to control our actions properly despite our emotional state.

There are many ways we can work on our self-awareness. One useful way is self-reflection and the practice of silence. Practicing in silence allows space for us to hear the whisper of our emotions. The more silence we practice, the louder our emotions become, and the more aware we become of them.

You can make a weekly or even a daily practice of sitting in a quiet room by yourself for 30 minutes, and allow yourself to notice what is happening inside of you. Day after day, you will start noticing how you feel, and you may even feel some emotions for things that happened a very long time ago, and better process them.

Self-reflection is another practice which is very useful, which you can do through journaling. Reflect back on past events, especially those that cost you a lot of pain, triggered you or made you lose control, or induced a lot of intense emotions in you. Take notes of how you feel, reflect and reverse-engineer what exactly caused you to feel the way you did, go back to your notes every now and then, and reflect how you can make better decisions, choices and actions based on the lessons you got from your self-reflection.

Embracing your emotions

There are no right or wrong emotions. All emotions have a valid reason to exist, and every emotion needs to be listened to because it is trying to tell us something about what is going on inside of us. 

Being judgmental or dismissive of our emotions is not really helpful. Instead, being curious of our feeelings and their roots, be it negative ones like insecurity or doubt, can help us get to know ourselves more.

Asking ourselves why a particular emotion induced something in us can be beneficial. We can use our emotions to learn deeply about ourselves, and to make better decisions to improve our state.

Don’t act on your emotions 

Accepting your emotions does not mean deciding what to do based on how you feel, and letting your emotion take a hold of your life. 

If you look back at some of the mistakes and wrong decisions you made that led to negative consequences in your life, you will find that a lot of them were mainly driven by an intense emotional state you were in at the time that overtook your mind and your rational thinking. This weakness can prevent you from assessing your options properly. It is very important to be aware of the fact that emotions are to be felt, but not to be acted on. 

Using your emotions as the main input to your decisions can lead to being impulsive and to jumping into situations that are not good for you. This can also lead you to avoiding trying new things that could benefit you.

Emotions are very useful for self-development purposes because they tell you important things about you, your values, your past traumas, and your programming. That kind of insight can be used to work on yourself. 


Empathy is a very important emotional skill to develop. It is the ability to see the world through the lens of other people’s perspective and emotional state. This skill can help you connect with other people better, show compassion, make good social choices, and ultimately develop lasting relationships.

This emotional skill allows you to respond to other people and their needs adequately, which then can lead to better relationships and elevated quality of life.

This skill is also very useful when it comes to uncovering a person’s true intentions too, which can help  you identify people who have harmful intentions toward you. Having this skill can save you from a lot of drama and troubles.

Work on being self-reliant 

It is important to teach ourselves to be in charge of our lives in general, and self-reliance is a much bigger concept that goes beyond emotional mastery.

Taking full responsibility for our choices and the consequences of them in our lives comes with a huge emotional component to it. It can be a road traveled alone, because it triggers a range of negative emotions such as fear, anxiety and pain, but the effects of it are worth it.

Self-reliance means you do not rely on external sources to feel good about yourself. You do not rely on a partner to make you happy, you do not always expect your friends to make you feel better, and you don’t even depend on material things such as new clothes or new shoes to make you happy. Self-reliance means working on diminishing unhealthy dependency on others. We are social creatures who need to connect with others, but some aspects of our lives should depend on us.

Self-reliance also means you make your own decisions. You may seek other people’s opinion or inputs but the final decision is always yours. This also means accepting the consequences of such.

Working on your self-reliance can lead to better decisions based on your inner moral compass, set of values, own reasoning and intuition to assess situations.

Not taking life too seriously

While it is smart to be cautious about major decisions in life like making money, finding a life partner, improving your spiritual life or honing your passions, it is important that you know how to enjoy the ride because no one comes out of life alive anyway!

Life is better when you accept that sometimes bad days happen for you to learn some essential lessons and elevate your character, so you can appreciate and maximize the good days when they are there! Do not miss out on life and its beauty just because you are too overwhelmed with temporary emotions. Take it all in, reflect, let go and truly live.