• I was recently flying to NYC to direct a CEO round table, when on the descent to JFK airport the pilot emerged to say and I quote, “Unfortunately folks, I have some bad news: due to weather in NY, until further notice no planes are taking off or landing at this time. I will keep you updated as information becomes available.”

    Emotional Intelligence mind map, business management strategy
    It’s at these emotional moments in life that our human behavior is on display and a wide variety of actions, reactions and responses unconsciously surface. Frankly, you can learn a lot about a person when they’re introduced to a challenging event and placed under extreme stress and pressure.
    The plane cabin at this point was filled with open dialogue as if we were sitting across from each other around the dinner table. The wide range of confusion, concern and in some cases panic overcame those who were not equipped emotionally to handle this level of change and unknown.
    Emotional IntelligenceI began to think about what Daniel Goleman said in his 1996 bestseller, Emotional Intelligence. In his book, Daniel suggested that EQ: Emotional Quotient (better known as Emotional Intelligence) is actually more important than IQ, our Intelligence Quotient. Why? Because studies show that IQ, a standard measure of intelligence from standardized testing, does not encompass the full range of human intelligence. EQ is a measure of a person’s ability to perceive, control, evaluate and express emotions in difficult times; a behavior that serves us well both personally and professionally. In fact, without getting too technical in order to be Emotionally Intelligent and thus successful in business and in life, it takes the ability to access a certain part of your brain and frankly, that takes some doing.
    Let’s go back to the plane scenario: those who were reacting were using a primitive part of their brain, the one that we access quickly without thinking. You know the part of the brain that tells us to step back onto the curb to avoid an oncoming bus; however, in many cases, this rush of adrenaline compels us to react out of ignorance. Many of my fellow passengers who began to immediately panic, think the worse and make ridiculous comments out loud without thinking were not emotionally equipped to handle the situation.
    When we exercise Emotional intelligence we take the long way around to a part of the brain that evokes thought, evaluation, and consideration. When we respond we respond intelligently. The folks who were breathing, thinking and in many cases saying little or nothing were emotionally strong and in control.

    Here is a quick easy to remember acronym to use next time you’re faced with a difficult, emotionally charged situation:

    the acronym is BRAKE.

    Breathe and be calm for a moment
    Relax and think
    Assess the situation without reacting ignorantly
    Know your choice before responding
    Elect to respond intelligently

    After all the chaos ensued for what seemed to be an hour (which was no more than 10 minutes), a calming presence appeared in the form of a flight attendant telling everyone that this was a routine occurrence heading into JFK and no one was in jeopardy of missing their connections due to the fact that their connections were grounded as well. Moments later, the pilot reemerged telling everyone that the weather had moved on and we were cleared for landing.
    brake-acronymNext time you’re in a difficult situation take a moment stay calm and think intelligently before allowing your emotions to get Hijacked.

  • They say that a butterfly flapping its wings in Africa can impact the climate in Alaska.  The butterfly effect, as it’s called, is where small causes can have large effects.  Ever get trapped in a room with a mosquito?

    When it comes to people, in many ways we’re alike.  There is little difference.  However, one little difference almost always makes a big difference.  That little difference is attitude and the big difference is whether that attitude is positive or negative.

    William James said one of the greatest discoveries of this generation is that a human being can alter their life dramatically by altering just one small simple thing – their attitude.  And that small change not only impacts your happiness and success, but, it impacts the happiness and success of everyone around you.

    The good news is there is no skill necessary to have a positive attitude; it’s a choice, a behavior you choose in order to impact your life and the lives of others in a positive way.  The challenge is that it takes, in many cases, a renewed mindset – a different way of thinking.

    So why consider an attitude adjustment?  Nothing, absolutely nothing, in life has a bigger cause and effect.  Your attitude influences everything.  It can control the time you get up in the morning, the time you go to sleep at night, what you eat and drink, and the very thought that runs through your head.  Your attitude can make you happy or sad, loving or hateful, and in doing so, control your capacity for success.

    Little Things Make a BIG Difference

    When you nurture and groom your attitude in a positive way you can influence everyone you come in contact with; your family, your friends, your peers, everyone.

    Here is a simple concept — your thoughts direct your beliefs, your beliefs direct your actions.  Guard your thoughts carefully – they’re the origin of a positive attitude.  Your mind is like fertile soil and your thoughts are the seeds you plant.  If you plant crabgrass, don’t expect to harvest magnolias.

    It’s said that pessimism leads to weakness and optimism leads to power.  With the proper attitude there will be no person or obstacle that can stand in the way of your success and your ability to make a positive impact on others.

    Remember, it’s not your position in life that makes you happy and successful, it’s your disposition.

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