MIND MAPPING & EQ DEVELOPMENT

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A mind map is a diagram used to visually organize information. A mind map is hierarchical and shows relationships among pieces of the whole.

What is mind mapping?
Mind mapping was developed as an effective method for generating ideas by association. In order to create a mind map, you usually start in the middle of the page with the central theme/main idea and from that point you work outward in all directions to create a growing diagram composed of keywords, phrases, concepts, facts and figures.
It can be used for assignments and essay writing especially in the initial stages, whereit is an ideal strategy to use for your ‘thinking’. Mind mapping can be used for generating, visualising, organising, note-taking, problem-solving, decision-making, revising and clarifying your university topic, so that you can get started with assessment tasks. Essentially, a mind map is used to ‘brainstorm’ a topic and is a great strategy for students.
How do I use mind mapping?
You can use mind mapping for the following:
 taking notes in a lecture and listening for the most important points or keywords
 showing links and relationships between the main ideas in your subject
 brainstorming all the things you already know about an essay question
 planning the early stages of an essay by visualising all the aspects of the question
 organising your ideas and information by making it accessible on a single page
 stimulating creative thinking and creative solutions to problems
 reviewing learning in preparation for a test or examination.

How do I get started with mind mapping?
1) Place the central theme/main idea or controlling point in the centre of your page. You may find it easier to place your page on the side, in landscape orientation, which is easier for drawing purposes.
2) Use lines, arrows, speech bubbles, branches and different colours as ways of showing the connection between the central theme/main idea and your ideas which stem from that focus. The relationships are important, as they may form your essay paragraphs.

3) Avoid creating an artistic masterpiece. You should draw quickly without major pauses or editing. Chances are, your first idea was fine and you placed that idea in the direction or on the branch you thought made the most sense. It is important in the initial stages of mind mapping to consider every possibility, even those you may not use.
4) Choose different colours to symbolise different things e.g. you may choose blue for something you must incorporate in your paper, black for other good ideas, and red for the things you need to research or check with your tutor/lecturer. Your method is entirely up to you, but try to remain consistent so that you can better reflect on your mind map at a later stage.
5) Leave some space on your page. The reason for this is that you can continue to add to your diagram over a period of time. If A4 sized paper feels too small, you may like to use A3.

What is emotional intelligence or EQ?

Emotional intelligence (otherwise known as emotional quotient or EQ) is the ability to understand, use, and manage your own emotions in positive ways to relieve stress, communicate effectively, empathize with others, overcome challenges and defuse conflict. Emotional intelligence helps you build stronger relationships, succeed at school and work, and achieve your career and personal goals. It can also help you to connect with your feelings, turn intention into action, and make informed decisions about what matters most to you.

Emotional intelligence is commonly defined by four attributes:

  1. Self-management – You’re able to control impulsive feelings and behaviors, manage your emotions in healthy ways, take initiative, follow through on commitments, and adapt to changing circumstances.
  2. Self-awareness – You recognize your own emotions and how they affect your thoughts and behavior. You know your strengths and weaknesses, and have self-confidence.
  3. Social awareness – You have empathy. You can understand the emotions, needs, and concerns of other people, pick up on emotional cues, feel comfortable socially, and recognize the power dynamics in a group or organization.
  4. Relationship management – You know how to develop and maintain good relationships, communicate clearly, inspire and influence others, work well in a team, and manage conflict.

    Why is emotional intelligence so important?

    As we know, it’s not the smartest people who are the most successful or the most fulfilled in life. You probably know people who are academically brilliant and yet are socially inept and unsuccessful at work or in their personal relationships. Intellectual ability or your intelligence quotient (IQ) isn’t enough on its own to achieve success in life. Yes, your IQ can help you get into college, but it’s your EQ that will help you manage the stress and emotions when facing your final exams. IQ and EQ exist in tandem and are most effective when they build off one another.

    Emotional intelligence affects:

    Your performance at school or work. High emotional intelligence can help you navigate the social complexities of the workplace, lead and motivate others, and excel in your career. In fact, when it comes to gauging important job candidates, many companies now rate emotional intelligence as important as technical ability and employ EQ testing before hiring.

    Your physical health. If you’re unable to manage your emotions, you are probably not managing your stress either. This can lead to serious health problems. Uncontrolled stress raises blood pressure, suppresses the immune system, increases the risk of heart attacks and strokes, contributes to infertility, and speeds up the aging process. The first step to improving emotional intelligence is to learn how to manage stress.

    Your mental health. Uncontrolled emotions and stress can also impact your mental health, making you vulnerable to anxiety and depression. If you are unable to understand, get comfortable with, or manage your emotions, you’ll also struggle to form strong relationships. This in turn can leave you feeling lonely and isolated and further exacerbate any mental health problems.

    Your relationships. By understanding your emotions and how to control them, you’re better able to express how you feel and understand how others are feeling. This allows you to communicate more effectively and forge stronger relationships, both at work and in your personal life.

    Your social intelligence. Being in tune with your emotions serves a social purpose, connecting you to other people and the world around you. Social intelligence enables you to recognize friend from foe, measure another person’s interest in you, reduce stress, balance your nervous system through social communication, and feel loved and happy.

    Building emotional intelligence: Four key skills to increasing your EQ

    The skills that make up emotional intelligence can be learned at any time. However, it’s important to remember that there is a difference between simply learning about EQ and applying that knowledge to your life. Just because you know you should do something doesn’t mean you will—especially when you become overwhelmed by stress, which can override your best intentions. In order to permanently change behavior in ways that stand up under pressure, you need to learn how to overcome stress in the moment, and in your relationships, in order to remain emotionally aware.

    The key skills for building your EQ and improving your ability to manage emotions and connect with others are:

    1. Self-management
    2. Self-awareness
    3. Social awareness
    4. Relationship management

 

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