Emotional intelligence is becoming a hot topic in the world of business. To be honest, it should be applicable across the board and taught in schools, universities. Those who learn to master their emotions will move faster and think better than those who are extremely emotional.
I know when I was competing as an athlete I would go up and down with my thinking. I'd be driven purely on proving others wrong. Sometimes I'd be driven just to claim the title and bragging rights to say I had beaten so and so or to try and get a title. Over time I found these extremely limiting ways of thinking. When I got injured or ill it was a real challenge, there was a lot of time to reflect on why you're doing all this. A lot of meeting of the minds and conflicting thoughts.
To be honest, this was more valuable to me than anything else I'd experienced in sport, being taken to ground level after putting so much in is hard work. I had physically broken myself multiple times and also mentally taken myself through the coals many times.
I was so focused on only achieving the outcome that I forgot what it was I needed to get to that point. I did start to become a lot better at managing my emotions towards the end of my sporting life. I began to reduce the outside noise, focused more on my train of thought.
I started to reflect more and saw what was I doing, thinking that I wished to keep and things I wished to bin.
I scratched the surface on this when I was in sport. After retiring, I had a huge chip on my shoulder after many years of hard work. If people spoke about my rowing, I'd present my state of affairs as to why I had the unfortunate exit from the sport. It's easy to point the finger at others and find excuses as to why things didn't go to plan. I felt frustrated and angry when each time I thought about it.
Over time and after some pretty heavy reflection on the way I thought, I had a change of perspective. What benefit was it to me practising being pissed off and angry about something I spent a lot of my time enjoying. The sport helped mould me partly into the person I am today. Ask me now about the sport and my time in it, and I'll explain how I was the limiting factor in how I got on.
I was too focused, thick-headed, the person who thought it was weak to ask for help, I wasn't flexible in my thinking. I also only had one train of thought. It was 110% or nothing.
I realised to grow my thinking I had to look at things in a different way across the whole picture, w my work my family my health. I was not going to get bogged down in the problems but focus more on what principles I needed to have in position to overcome obstacles.
We're always going to encounter challenging situations, but rather than being led by my emotions, I try to see things for what they are. It really simplifies things. I practice and train myself for what I want to keep. When things are moving fast and progres
sing I work on keeping composed and grounded, when things are difficult and challenging, patience and calm are good measures to implement.
Very few people address how they think act and behave, and that's why they get pushed around so much emotionally because they don't know how to manage themselves or what type of person they are building.
Below are a few key points that will impact what you become.
- Look at your behaviour - Think and behave in the same way that you think is the best way to help you grow. - at the end of each day reflect on how you've thought, communicated and behaved (can you better it a little bit tomorrow) - Practice the game that you talk. - Be flexible in your thinking when it gets challenging. - Everyone's perspective is valuable - Follow through with things that you talk about.