• Emotional Awareness

    It is a strength and a key element of self-awareness to be able to recognize your emotions and how you are feeling. Emotional awareness pinpoint and describe your emotions as well as others. When we have emotional awareness, we are better equipped to navigate friendships and other relationships in our lives. 

    The first level of emotional awareness is knowing when the feelings are present within ourselves. Next, we need to be able to acknowledge those emotions. Often times we may not know what the feeling or emotion is that we are having; however, we are able to acknowledge that we are feeling some feeling or emotion. We want to identify the feeling or emotion; this helps with building our emotional vocabulary, which is so important for children and adults. When we are able to identify that emotion then we are able to identify the unmet emotional need that we are experiencing. Additionally, identifying the emotion can also cause the cognitive emotional systems to work together to help us remember that particular emotion. Lastly, accept the emotion or feeling. Sometimes we try to fight the feeling or emotion that we are experiencing because we believe that we should not feel that way. However, it is ok to feel that emotion. 

    So how to do we develop emotional awareness or emotional intelligence. Well, there are a number of ways.

    1. Self-awareness: this is the ability to understand our own emotions and how it may have an impact on others. 

    2. Self-regulation: When we are not emotionally aware, we may not have control over our emotions. When we are able to self-regulate, we are able to effectively manage our emotions and behaviors. 

    3. Social awareness: This is when we are able to understand the emotions of others. This concept also helps with empathy. 

    In addition to the above steps, we can also engage in emotional exploration exercises, where we identify words from a list that best describe our current emotions. Emotional awareness also entails us being able to recognize and identify how we feel in the present moment.