Emotional intelligence (EI) is about being able to work through one’s own emotions and thoughts and influence other people’s. Having a partner with this kind of intelligence is awesome and even crucial to your relationship’s success. Here are 10 examples your partner is emotionally intelligent.
They’re incredibly self-aware. One of the sexiest traits someone can have is self-awareness. This expresses an incredibly high EI because it means they’re in-tune with their state of being at any given time. They’re willing to dig deep into their psyche to understand what’s happening for them and why. This also helps them to relate better to others.
They tend to be empathetic. When something’s happening with you like trouble at work, they can put themselves in your shoes and relate their experiences to yours. They’re not blocked off from feeling or unable to compute exactly what’s going on for you. Rather, on some level, they’re feeling what you’re feeling. This is a big sign of EI.
They know how to pause. The pause is incredibly important, arguably even more so than having the right thing to say. Those who know how to take a breath before they speak or act are better able to get a grip on their emotions. They don’t let feelings like anger or sadness take over the show. This means they aren’t doing harm to their partners by letting their tongue slip and saying things they don’t mean (or won’t mean once the moment passes).
They have healthy friendships. This may seem tangential to EI, but having healthy friendships is crucial. A partner with healthy connections to loved ones is one who’s likely stable and emotionally available. Their relationships with their friends will be a mirror for their relationship with you. You can depend on your partner to lean on their friends when you two are having a fight or a hard time and you likely won’t have to worry about your partner being codependent.
They’re an active listener. When you’re speaking to them, you can tell that they’re digesting what you’re saying. Their body language is on point, their eye contact is great, and they’re alternating between “mhm” and asking questions. They also know when to be silent and offer space. This kind of listener is a beauty to have because you truly feel heard.
They can and do set boundaries. This may not always be fun for you, but you’ve come to respect it. Your partner knows how to say “no” when they’ve hit their limit or something is outside of their comfort zone. They’re able to set boundaries to keep themselves safe and sane. This sometimes means you don’t get what you want, but at least you know your partner’s being true to themselves.
They have healthy coping mechanisms. Your partner isn’t an active alcoholic, someone who cuts themselves, or a sex addict. Instead, they utilize healthy coping mechanisms like reaching out to friends, getting some exercise, and seeing a therapist. These methods keep them chugging along in a healthy way, which in turn spells good things for your relationship. If you get in a fight, you know they’ll know how to cope.
They can hold two seemingly opposing feelings. This one’s an interesting one. Your partner likely has high EI if they’re able to work with dialectics. For example, they’re upset at you for something that you did and they’re also grateful that you told them. They don’t have all or nothing, black and white thinking. They very much know how to live in the gray which is what life is all about!
They own their stuff. If your partner takes ownership over their mistakes, they likely have a high EI. Someone who isn’t afraid to say, “Whoops, that was me, I messed up!” is a partner who’s emotionally mature. They aren’t afraid to look you in the eye and admit they’ve made a mistake. This is intelligent because it means they aren’t blaming their stuff on anyone else.
They can express vulnerability. It takes a lot of courage to show emotions like sadness and fear. It’s also courageous for someone to admit when something’s bothering them rather than be passive aggressive. These both are expressions of vulnerability, which Dictionary.com defines as: “Capable of or susceptible to being wounded or hurt.” It’s someone putting themselves out there and it’s brave!
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