To raise my Emotional Intelligence/ Emotional Quotient (EQ), I have the idea of constantly monitoring and timing when a particular emotion would occur and note it down. Once I conditioned myself to become aware of emotions after a long period of time, I could create personalised flow-chart action plans to regulate emotions, especially negative emotions. Awareness is key here as if I become conditioned to sense my emotion at a particular time, I can overcome the Amygdala’s knee-jerk reaction (as the amygdala controls emotions in the brain) and allow enough time for my pre-frontal cortex (part of the brain that processes reasoning) to become active and stay rational. It’s only a theory at the moment. Our brains were evolved to respond quickly to emotions from the amygdala, especially anger and fear, during cave men times but this aspect of the brain is not useful in today’s society (over-eating, anger management issues, drug and alcohol addiction, stress, heart problems, violence).
I learnt from Daniel Coleman’s book, “Working with Emotional Intelligence”, that thoughts are not divorced from emotion; so when I was completely clinical and rational in how I thought, it was due to my feeling of calmness which I was unaware of (as Science degrees don’t train us to be aware of our emotions). I thought I was purely rational and unemotional when I had logical thoughts and acted on those thoughts to get a long-term goal.
Once you are aware of your emotions and have planned to control the negative ones, your internal world of emotions and thoughts are regulated. Everything starts in the Mind; if you think and feel happy, an unpleasant person or life event can’t harm you provided you took steps to improve the person or life event with the things under your direct control (like take medicine for your mental/ physical problems, report an issue to an authority).