Achilles and Emotional Intelligence

Achilles’ heel…

I seriously doubt that Homer ever imagined that Achilles, one of the most intriguing Iliad heroes would end up being mostly associated with his weak and vulnerable spot – his tendon. However, the merciless 20/20 hind-sight historic viewpoint  has proved so many people wrong with both their expectations and predictions.

Let’s face it: we all have our own tender heels and let’s not blame our stumbling and occasional downfalls on Paris’ well aimed and Apollo guided arrows. It’s no coincidence that Achilles was also infamous for his frequent rages. He would fly off the handle and the Greeks would almost lose the war.

But let’s fast forward to the 21st century and the year 2011. With 3 days left for the grand entrance of the new year and the customary and introspective grandiose decision and resolution making deals, wouldn’t you want to have the magic wand to stop trouble before it happens?

While there are all kinds of trouble spots, moods, behaviors and inborn personality tendencies that we need to tame in order not to fall flat on our faces as we deal with our colleagues, teams, loved ones and a bunch of other people around us, I will point the finger to the all time classic burst of anger. And the issue is the outburst. It’s that moment in time where the surge of adrenaline makes you blindly stupid.

Picture this: you are in the office, and you read this terribly upsetting email. You are furious and you write – correction – you blast off the sender, and then you turn pink and red and purple as you realize you already pressed the send button. Disaster in the making…

So, while Microsoft has already provided for your rush response if you are using Outlook, here comes a brilliant gadget, Emotional Tone Check, from Lymbix a Canadian start up, recognized among the top 2010 innovative ideas by the New York Times. The point is not peddling the product – the issue is to resist you – yes, your emotional outburst, the reaction, the rage, and whatever will get you in that space in the first place.

But if on the other hand, a cute little emoticon smiley face will make you not do it, then by all means – just try it out. As long as you think about it later. Promise?

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