No, that doesn’t mean being witty on Facebook. What social intelligence represents is a key personality trait when it comes to career as well as life success. We all want to be loved, we crave to be successful. The human mind responds to our basic primal needs, which is hardwired into our impulses.
Our brains react on instinct and for precautionary purposes when it comes to personal interactions, this to avoid getting hurt. What we’ll do is generally interpret every social experience negatively, this automatically.
This is because of our previous experiences of being rejected socially, creating instances of misguided perceptions. While we’re wanting to be accepted by the hip crowd, loved by others, to be included as part of the gang, we still view life negatively.
This tendency is a natural evolutionary instinct. It’s forged in our brains, this to avoid potential threats to our immediate environment. So it’s more of a survival mechanism, the fight or flight response.
When wanting to be accepted by others, what we naturally do is expect the worse, bad things, just so we won’t get hurt emotionally. What doing so also does is it wreaks havoc on our self esteem and perception.
Being Part Of The Crowd
For instance, you’re out with friends, a dinner party, there’s one particular person, the chatty Susan’s of the world, that over the course of the evening, you notice she talks to everyone but you.
That person doesn’t acknowledge you, completely ignores you in a cursory but odd manner. The first initial thought is that “this person doesn’t like me.”
This person has also got your attention, you take notice, your brain says, “I want to be included in their same group, so I won’t get left out.” This is how your negative thinking filter reacts, you feel threatened, left out.
This is on pure instinct. Similar to how wild animals react in the forest, we as social animals think the same way, this once we face social rejection. “I’m not liked, I’m unlovable, undesirable, not cool.”
Ego Driven Thinking
What we need to do is release our ego based perspective, and view life from their point of view, by showing empathy. Find out what they’re thinking, see it from their perspective on what they think about you.
Most likely, it’s not that the person doesn’t like you, but more that they feel threatened by you, somehow. Keep in mind that their primal instincts are based on negativity as well.
Our inability for us to see things from the viewpoint of others, which is a feature of having emotional intelligence, combined with the tendency to think negatively, this often about ourselves, takes us down the path of dejection.
We don’t see the salient power of our own social existence, while rejecting the notion that we may be posing some type of a threat to them, this simply by we being there. This is why they’re avoiding you.
Not Everyone Likes You
There are some who just won’t like you, so they keep a distance. Instead, what our negativity makes us think is that we’re weaker, dumber, or not as attractive, and that they’re smarter, bigger, prettier. What we don’t realize is that they’re thinking the exact same thing about us, a paradox.
So to develop social intelligence, we need to improve our transactional empathy. Empathy is the key aspect of emotional intelligence, where we shift from the ego based, “me,” to more of a worldview of “us” and “them.”
What doing so does is it allows us to witness ourselves, to view ourselves from their perspective, who we are and what they think of us. This provides for a much more realistic vision of what they’re thinking.
IQ, or intelligence quotient is what we’re born with. SI, social intelligence, is part genetics but mostly learned. Social Intelligence develops from our experiences with people, from our adventures in social settings. Some call it common sense, having tact, “street smarts.”
Measure Your Social Intelligence
Perfected Verbal Conversation Skills
Those with high social intelligence, they know how to tactfully work the room in social settings. They carry on conversations with a wide range people, appropriately and gracefully.
Know The Social Rules And Roles
Those who are socially intelligent know their social roles. They know the rules on what governs proper social interaction. They know how to play the game, and they play it well. They come across as socially sophisticated.
Refined Listening Skills
Socially intelligent people are excellent listeners. When speaking with someone who has high social intelligence, that person walks away feeling that they’ve totally connected with them.
Knowing What Drives People
They study people, highly social intelligent people track what others are saying, how they behave, this to get a reading on what they’re thinking or feeling. They understand emotional intelligence, and when combined with social intelligence, these highly equipped people become dangerous.
Social Role Playing
They know how to adapt to and play different social roles, which allows them to be comfortable and converse with every type of person. This results in them feeling extremely confident and effective, what’s known as “social self efficacy.”
Making An Impression
Those high in social intelligence concern themselves and are aware of the impression that they’re making. They engage in perfecting their impression management techniques.
They balance the fine line between controlling and managing the image that they portray. Being authentic while allowing others see their true self. This perhaps being the most difficult element of SI.
Developing Social Intelligence
What it takes is effort. Start by paying more attention towards the social world that’s around you. Work on becoming a better conversationalist, improve your communication skills, dress appropriately.
Become a better observer, learn active listening, which is a process of reflecting on what the speaker is really trying to say, this to understand them better.
Study the various social situations and your behavior. Learn and adapt from your social successes, and more importantly your failures.