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Making the most of your learning style: Emotional intelligence

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The two strands of personal intelligence, as defined by Gardner, are often associated with key social skills that help to explain why some people are more adept than others at forming friendships and relationships, or perhaps at getting along well with colleagues and peers.

Intrapersonal intelligence - understanding one's own feelings - involves self-awareness and helps people to curb their impulses.

Interpersonal intelligence - understanding the feelings of others - contributes to the ability to empathise.

Emotional competencies (such as self-awareness and empathy) are important in the workplace, in education, and in families. Research has explored how emotional intelligence could be taught to young adults to improve their social and emotional skills, on the basis of five principles.

  • Recognising your emotions
  • Managing your emotions
  • Motivating yourself
  • Understanding other people's emotions
  • Managing relationships

Improving your emotional intelligence

One of the aims of being reflective is to encourage you to recognise your emotions while engaged in study tasks. Becoming more aware of your responses and recognising that you have choices in how you manage these responses can lead to greater self-awareness and empathy. This can help you to

  • motivate yourself and others
  • overcome procrastination
  • develop self-confidence in your studies
  • improve communication with peers and tutors.
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