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If I were born a Man?

If I were born a man…..

A brief interlude this morning with a lovely couple who were celebrating their forty-second wedding anniversary presented their thoughts of not hearing emotional and intellect in the same sentence very often and subsequently asked me the question ‘if I were born a man would I think differently?’. For me this was an interesting observation to consider and one I felt compelled to answer and to bring some added thought too. In essence as a woman am I more emotionally intelligent than a man?

I was then reminded of my private equity days – a woman in a man’s world, structured environment, fast-paced, no time for thinking about how I felt, always working on the next deal. That atmosphere taught me a vast amount about business and life too.

Emotional intelligence (EQ) is broken down into four key parts, self-awareness, empathy, managing our emotions and social skill. As we are seeing more and more businesses understand and fully recognise the advantages of a high EQ when we look at sales, building teams and of course leadership it would seem that women tend to have the edge over men.

However, neuroscientists tell us that is we consider empathy we will see how men and women differ as the women tend to stay with the emotion, thereby helping to nurture and support others in emotional trying situations whereas men sense it, tune out and switch to a mind-set of solving the problem that created it in the first instance. Now as you can see neither is better than the other, there are simply taking two different perspectives and clearly there is scope to learn from both.

Furthermore in a study by psychologist Dr Malloy which analysed both men and women in the top ten per cent of business performance it was shown that the men are as good as the women and the women as good as the men so gender differences in emotional intelligence shows no disparity. One might of course argue that these individuals have a high EQ and having developed this fantastic trait they enjoy more success in every area of life; social, emotional, physical and of course financial.

Whilst EQ isn’t always easy to change quickly, with some effort, most people can improve their emotional intelligence with coaching, mentoring, self-introspection and feedback from others. EQ also naturally increases with age.

Here are some of the traits of high EQ people. Do you see yourself as one?

• They pause and instead of reacting with panic and fear they manage responses in a proactive manner, helping keep their stress levels to a minimum.
• They don’t make decisions when they are scared, angry or hurt. They wait until they are in a better mental state and review the situation from a happy place.
• They love getting out of their comfort zone, new experiences, people and ideas. They are intellectually curious and tend to have friends from every walk of life. They always seek new possibilities and look for the best in people.
• They are not afraid of change and don’t need structure to feel secure.
• They celebrate others successes, they don’t judge, criticize, interrupt or blame people.
• They understand the chain reaction with their thoughts creating their emotions. With this self-awareness they can manage their emotions more effectively and set an example for others. This helps to ultimately create better personal and business relationships and overall happiness.
• They look at life from a balanced perspective. They don’t beat themselves up on things they cannot control.
• They don’t embrace negativity. They are motivated by their own personal goals and desires rather than power, wealth, status or approval.
• They don’t let others get to them. They are resilient, able to agree to disagree, they don’t dwell on the past but learn from it.

By mastering your emotional intelligence and mind-set you will stand out from the crowd, you will have better interpersonal relationships, career success, happiness and peace. This will bring you much more inner satisfaction and joy in your life.