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What Is Emotional Intelligence?

When people think of intelligence, they usually think about book smarts. However, there are many types of intelligence. One of the most crucial to our relationships and recovery is emotional intelligence.

Defining Emotional Intelligence

Emotional intelligence is the ability to understand, identify, and manage your emotions and the emotions of others. It also involves the ability to use that information to navigate interpersonal relationships. Examples of high emotional intelligence include the following:

  • Communicating clearly and effectively during high-stress scenarios
  • Adapting to situations that change quickly without expressing resentment or emotional distress
  • Handling constructive criticism with a level head
  • Offering empathy for a person’s emotions and thoughts, even if you perceive the situation differently
  • Owning up to your mistakes and apologizing with the intent to not repeat the mistake
  • Listening to another person to hear and understand their perspective rather than respond
  • Accepting your thoughts, emotions, and environment without judgment

Though we all have an innate capacity for empathy, environmental factors can positively or negatively influence our emotional intelligence.

How Substances Impact Your Connection With Others

When you abuse substances for long enough, it impairs your mind. You become hyperfocused on obtaining, using, or hiding substances. You’ll likely struggle to interact normally with others. Substances become a priority over friendships and family. Unfortunately, lying and stealing can become the norm. It can feel easy to walk all over your loved ones. The longer it goes on, the less patience people will have with you. You may struggle to identify the impact of substances on yourself or others. It can feel more difficult to emotionally regulate while frequently using or drinking. As a result, you could lash out when people express concern.

Navigating Interpersonal Relationships With Emotional Intelligence

In treatment, you’ll have to relearn your emotional intelligence. You must engage with other people in group therapy. In facilities, you must be at least civil, but ideally friendly, with other patients. This will put your emotional intelligence to use. Moreover, cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) and dialectical behavior therapy (DBT) will help you practice emotional regulation and mindfulness as well.

Depending on the damage, your loved ones may also come to visit you in rehab. You may go to psychoeducation groups together. Also, family therapy may help you improve your relationships. During all of these situations, you’ll have to navigate emotions and thoughts. Your emotional intelligence skills will help you manage these situations.

Emotional intelligence is an important type of intelligence to possess. It allows you to navigate your and other people’s emotions effectively. During treatment and recovery, it’s crucial to practice and implement your emotional intelligence. This will help you interact with your loved ones and peers. If you feel like your emotional intelligence is impaired, The Guest House can help you. We can guide you through different forms of psychotherapy that boost your emotional and thought-based skills. When you’re ready for help, call The Guest House at (855) 483-7800.