Building your career with emotional intelligence is one of the smartest things you can do! How do you begin?

1. EQ starts with self-awareness. Know your strengths.
Take the StrengthsFinder(tm) profile and find out what your innate abilities are so you can build your career around them. This assessment is available when you buy "Now, Discover Your Strengths," by Buckingham and Clifton.

2. Evolve optimism.

This EQ competency facilitates all the others and accounts more for your success and happiness than any other. Optimistic people live longer, healthier lives, enjoy their successes more, and are more likely to fulfill their potential (Martin Seligman, Ph.D.). You can learn optimism.

3. Develop your flexibility.

Many excellent and satisfying goals are reached while you're on the way to something else.

4. Use your interpersonal skills.

It isn't what you know so much as who you know. Develop strong bonds and other people will help you get where you want to go.

5. Build your resilience.

There will be ups and downs on your way to your goals. How you react to setbacks, failures and losses determines the trajectory of your career. Bolster your resilience. Take a course in building resilience and get some coaching. Don't wait til you need it to find out why you need it.

6. Use your intuition.

It's your best guide.

7. Be a valuable team player.

Most work today is done in project teams and cooperation is essential. Learn how to handle constructive discontent, motivate others, and get along.

8. Practice primal leadership.

This means resonating with those around you and tuning in to their feelings. It means setting an example in attitude and emotional intelligence. Emotions are contagious and when you're the leader, you have the responsiblity and the opportunity to set the tone.

9. Be pleasant to be around.

When expertise, education and experience are equal, wouldn't you choose the person who's easiest to work with?

Be willing to share information and resources. Help others get what they want. Be empathic to their needs. Focus on their strengths, not their weaknesses. Facilitate their goals and express your appreciation for their accomplishments.

10. Get an EQ coach.

Author's Bio: 

Susan Dunn, M.A., is a personal and professional development coach specializing in transitions, midlife, career and emotional intelligence. Visit her on the web at and for FREE ezine.