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Four Ways to Boost Your Emotional Intelligence During Your Vacation

By Jack Costello

Perhaps you are firing up your grill or packing your bags-preparing to go for that wonderful vacation you have been planning for. Vacation time is your chance to leave your work-related concerns, relax and have fun. You can be forgiven if you do not want to do anything that reminds you of your job in any way. But being on vacation does not mean that you cannot continue to improve yourself.

Actually, the vacation period is the perfect time to boost your emotional intelligence as you de-stress and relax.

According to report prepared by the World Economic Forum, emotional intelligence is increasingly becoming one of the most critical job skills on the market, sometimes even outranking technical ability. The report also noted that it will be one of the top ten job skills by the year 2020. Today, many companies are giving it high priority when considering potential employees. This is why it makes sense to continually improve this skill. Improving your emotional intelligence is something you can easily do while having fun during your vacation. Here are four strategies that can help you to do this:

Increasing self-awareness

Going on vacation allows us to ease up and free our minds from the daily grind and pressures of our lives, and this is certainly the most common motive for traveling to exotic places. Because self awareness is the very essence of emotional intelligence, we can discover new things about ourselves that we were not aware of before. 

As we relax, we find ourselves getting attracted to certain people, and being repulsed by others. We also start to liken them to the people in our lives. Our calm and relaxed state of mind affords us some time for introspection. Therefore as you enjoy your favorite book or sip that sumptuous cocktail, set aside some time for soul searching.

Increasing empathy

Vacations are an ideal opportunity to check out other people. When you are relaxed, you are more approachable to other people, even strangers. It is therefore a good idea to create a game from observing things about people around you. Include your friends and family and discuss your observations with them. For example you can talk about their manner of walking, posture, facial expressions or dressing. This will give you pointers about their actions and character. 

You can repeat the game when you go to restaurants, movies and live concerts. Engaging with people who are close to you in this way will increase your empathy and enrich your entire vacation experience.

Increasing assertiveness

Many of us find it hard to ask for what we want, and this stops us from maximizing the opportunities that exist in our lives. In addition, it causes politics and unnecessary passive aggression tendencies in the work place. It is important to realize that the worst thing that can happen when you ask for something is for the responder to say no, which leaves you in exactly the same position you were before. Better still, the respondent can acquiesce to your request.

Contrary to common belief, vacation time is a great setting for exercising your 'asking muscles'. For instance, try to request for an upgrade as you are checking into your hotel.Also, politely notify the server if there is a problem with your meal. Since it is likely that you will never see the people that you are interacting with again, it might be easier to request for what you want. Getting out of your comfort zone and asking for what you want might be easier than what you think. Even better, it will greatly boost your self-confidence when your request is granted.

Increasing stress tolerance

You may convince yourself that you will change your life next month by for example starting to meditate every day or joining a yoga class. But life has a habit of intervening and throwing up new things that may block your path towards such goals. This can happen to even people with high levels of emotional brain power. To remedy this, use your vacation time to revamp your resilience strategies.

Being on vacation will give you a chance to do things that you ought to do and often neglect to create time for. This is the time to experiment and discover new rewarding and relaxing activities that you can integrate in your life when you go back home and resume your daily routine. 

In conclusion, while the things you do on vacation may not change your lifestyle or career, you can return home with more emotional brain power than when you left and at the same time feel refreshed and rejuvenated.

About the Author: Jack Costello is a 38 year old professional bodybuilding coach and writer. Graduated with a Master in Physical Education from the University of Fordham, he’s well-known in the fitness and bodybuilding industry. He is regarded as a trustworthy writer in his neutrality regarding the analysis of each of the products mentioned on this website. He currently works as a freelancer for SWOL Headquarters.
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