David Caruso: an intellectual view of emotion allows us to achieve goals

Most people overestimate their ability to understand the feelings of others. But this is one of the main conditions for success. It is not easy to register other people's feelings (empathy) and to recognize them and understand their causes (emotional intelligence, EI), but it is necessary to achieve a high level of efficiency. David Caruso, a professor at Yale University (US), told about this in his lecture at the Institute of Economics and Management of TSU.

Why, in an organization with a high intellectual level of employees, are some much more effective and successful than others? Why is the level of IQ (already familiar in the recognition of intelligence) often not related to what successes a person has achieved in life? As a consequence of these reflections, in 1990, American psychologists Mayer, Solovey, and Caruso created the theory of emotional intelligence. And one of the authors, David Caruso, a world-famous scientist and business coach, spoke about the essence of the theory. He did not just tell us about it, but explained how this theory finds application in everyday life: in business, in family, and in relationships.

It is often believed that emotions prevent us from achieving efficiency. But it is not true! Emotion (as opposed to mood) is a natural process of the body, a reaction to external stimuli. For example, fear is a reaction to a possible threat, joy is a reaction to something valuable in life, sadness is a reaction to loss. Emotions are adaptive and functional, they participate in the organization of cognitive activity and behavior. Emotions affect how we think. The main function of emotions is to mobilize the body to quickly cope with important interpersonal events. Emotions cannot be excluded from life. Suppression is a completely ineffective way of dealing with emotions. Moreover, the professor noted, there is a direct connection: the more you suppress emotions, the less information you can absorb.

You think: “It’s good that I do not show emotion”, - the professor says, - but you do not learn the information, all energy goes to self-control, and your efficiency is much lower than what’s possible. Emotional suppression has its value: loss of attention and a decrease in the quality of assimilating information. Of course, you need to do this from time to time, but you can not always live in this and consider it the norm.

So what should we do with emotions? Realize ...

It is important to separate: empathy is an understanding of what others feel at a non-verbal level. But this is not enough! You need to understand why people feel that way. I feel how you feel, but I also understand why you feel that way. Emotionally - I feel it, but cognitively I understand it.

EQ is the cognitive processing of the received non-verbal information. This is a kind of the intellectual point of view on emotions: emotions can help you think. Decision making is not purely rational. On the contrary, our emotions and intuition lead us to the point where conscious thinking is able to make the right choice.

The EI model, as David Caruso sees it, consists of several components:

Self-awareness and recognition (perception)

This is an ability to identify your own emotions and emotions of other people (by facial expressions, gestures, appearance, gait, behavior, and voice). This is the basic component for the development of emotional intelligence. Mimic and non-verbal manifestations of emotions are the same for all. A person can say one thing, but non-verbally express something completely different. If you are able to recognize

the original signal, then in the future you will be able to more accurately identify the situation and act on the basis of this understanding.

Self-motivation and use of emotions to stimulate thinking

This is the ability to activate your thinking process, to awaken creativity in yourself, using emotions as a motivating factor. In this case, you consciously understand the power of emotions, you are aware of your psychology and use your senses to your advantage. You learn to pay your attention to important things for you and artificially provoke the necessary emotions that will help solve the problem.

Understanding the emotions

This is the ability to determine the cause of an emotion’s origin, to recognize the connection between thoughts and emotions, to determine the transition from one emotion to another, to predict the development of emotion over time, to interpret emotions in relationships, and to understand complex and ambiguous feelings.

Managing emotions and relationships

This is the ability to restrain and direct your emotions and emotions of other people to achieve your goals. This also includes the ability to take emotions into account when building logical chains, solving various problems, making decisions, and choosing your behavior.

Some recommendations from Professor Caruso:

You can not choose emotions but you can develop the skills necessary for their proper use.
Think about how good you are at understanding the feelings of others. Often people overestimate their emotional intelligence. If you think that you do not have enough skills, there is a motive to develop them. The Dunning-Kruger effect works: it is understanding that no matter how much you know, you are only certain that you don’t know anything. The fact is that the more you overestimate yourself, the less motivation to develop a skill and the less a person is successful.
EI helps people to socialize, improve the quality of relations, increase empathy, and create a positive work atmosphere.
The higher the emotional intelligence, the more likely it is to achieve a high level of efficiency. The lower your EI, the more your brain has to strain to solve the problem. When you work with a complex person, just reevaluate the situation: there are no bad people, no one likes to be bad. But there are wrong strategies of interaction.
If the emotion helps, follow it. If the emotion interferes, manage it. There is no single strategy, but awareness is always important.