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Four Top Tips on How to Raise Your Emotional Intelligence and Enhance Your Career

The mining industry is one that fluctuates a lot in terms of popular commodity, work site opportunities and employment availability. And, while this can make for a really exciting career path, it can also be quite difficult to ride out these fluctuations with ease. Luckily, there’s a new buzzword floating around these days that can help you navigate it much easier. That is: emotional intelligence.

Essentially, emotional intelligence is having the ability to be aware of and control your emotions. It can help you immensely in all sorts of life situations, and it’s a hugely beneficial skill to have on a mine site. But since it’s not a very stereotypical skill mentioned on a resume, you might not even know whether you have it! So, here are my top four tips to build your emotional intelligence.

Take stock of what you’re feeling

On a busy mine site, the last thing you want to do is waste time observing your feelings. But when it comes to building your emotional intelligence, that’s the first necessary step. These days, we’re so busy rushing from one job to the next, we don’t actually take the time to stop and check in with ourselves how we’re feeling. This causes us to operate on autopilot more and more, and that’s where mistakes are made. So, put a few minutes aside whenever you can every day to take a breath and pay attention to the emotions you’re feeling – whether it’s anger, frustration, impatience or anything else.

Take responsibility for your behaviour

This is likely the most challenging part of raising your emotional intelligence, but it’s also the most rewarding. There are plenty of mistakes to be made in mining, and the repercussions can be severe. But we all make mistakes, and the most important thing to remember is to learn from them. Taking responsibility for mistakes and owning them can provide you with a wealth of valuable insight and information about yourself that you otherwise wouldn’t have been able to see.

Practise empathy

When you’re working with a tight-knit bunch of blokes on a mine site, you come to know them pretty well. You hear stories of their family and friends, and you can develop really strong bonds. So, having the ability to be empathetic towards any issues they’re facing can help you communicate better. And with the isolation that can so often be felt when you’re up on the mines for months at a time, that sort of communication can make a really positive difference.

Learn to take criticism

Criticism is never easy to hear. When you invest blood, sweat and tears into a project, it can be very hard to be told anything negative about it. But this criticism can give you extremely valuable feedback that can help you enhance not only your emotional intelligence but your knowledge of your work and industry. It can also build on your people skills because when you can take criticism well, you can also give it to your colleagues fairly and diplomatically.

Emotional intelligence might sound like a bit of an airy-fairy thing to want to achieve, but it’s become a highly valuable skill that is starting to be recognised by employers and sought after more and more in employees. So, by taking these four tips into account and trying to adhere to them every day (or even every second day), you’ll find yourself able to handle things much more effectively in both your work and home life.

Go listen to Owen Burchell on The Full Production Podcast