Interpersonal Intelligence

Interpersonal Intelligence That Makes You Smarter Than Before

The ability to interact, understand, and interpret others' behavior is known as interpersonal intelligence. Read the following article to understand how you can develop it.
SocialMettle Staff
Last Updated: Feb 26, 2018
Interpersonal intelligence is a concept that was introduced by Howard Gardner, an American Developmental Psychologist. It is the ability to understand relationships and people, interpreting their moods and temperaments and recognizing their intentions and motivations. This is a vital factor for effective communication in both professional and personal life. Why do people often refer to relationships as complex? It is because one of the two persons in a relationship either misinterprets an action, or say of the other, or simply because they don't understand each other. Likewise, not possessing or developing interpersonal intelligence can lead to conflicts at work or business. As per the definition, intelligence is something that we are born with, but having said that, it can be developed by being a part of various activities. Developing these skills can really be rewarding in building and retaining healthy business and personal relationships.

Examples

Listed below are some characteristics of a person with this intelligence:
  • Displays excellent leadership skills
  • Sensitive to others' feelings
  • Playing role of mediators or counselors
  • Good at understanding others
  • Co-operative when working with others
  • Demonstrates empathy towards others
  • Excellent at organizing chores/work and communication
  • Influential and is admired by peers and family
Activities

It is true that the aforementioned qualities come naturally to some. However, this does not mean that if you don't have it in you, you are forbidden to acquire it. It can be developed with certain efforts and activities. Check out some of the activities that you can involve in your daily lives; these are as follows:

Group Discussions and Projects
The purpose of being in a group discussion or project can bring in a lot of difference in the way you communicate. In addition to enhancing the communication skills, it also boosts one's confidence, as the activity is conducted in a group. Other qualities such as assertiveness, reasoning ability, spontaneous responses, and leadership skills are also developed and polished through such activities.

Cooperative Games
These activities are a brilliant way to develop such skills, as one tends to mingle with different people belonging to different races and religions, with different points of views and understanding. Communication is the key as it is the first step towards developing interpersonal skills. Playing outdoor games that require a team, and being a part of it is one of the ways to enhancing this characteristic. Leadership games can also be involved as one of the activities.

Multicultural Books
Being confined and restricted to a particular group or belief can negatively influence a person. After all, we live in a global world, which obviously means we cannot escape from intercultural communication. We meet different people of different ethnicity, and confining ourselves to a certain group restrains the growth of personality and results in developing narrow-minded and cynical approach towards the people and life in general. Reading multicultural books broadens one's horizons, familiarizes one with different cultures and languages, and encourages friendly relationships.

Discussion Groups and Panels
Discussions play a very important role in effective communication. Participating in discussion groups and panels helps one to express his/her views in front of a large group or forum. This is a very effective method of developing such skills, as in these forums, one can understand how different people perceive things, and their viewpoints. This way, you can get others' perspectives on various issues.

Thus, these are some of the techniques and ideas to develop your intelligence. If you notice, this considerably revolves around people. This concept is all about your behavior with people; you could call it people skills, which can only be enhanced when you be with them, followed by learning and understanding from them and about them.

There are many counseling careers for those who either possess or acquire interpersonal intelligence and have the potential to become successful. Such careers include politicians, psychologists, teachers, philosophers, business persons, salespersons, and counselors. Any industry that involves people requires professionals with good communication skills as interpersonal relationships at work play a very important role. With service industries blooming, it is imperative that one develops it, as they require handling people.
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