When we think of Intelligence, most of us think in terms of our IQ or Intelligence Quotient, which generally describes a score on a test that rates the subject's cognitive ability as compared to the general population. A commonplace assumption is that a high IQ automatically translates to success. In reality, success is based on a whole lot more, with our Emotional Quotient (EQ) (the measure of Emotional Intelligence or EI) belonging at the top of the list.
Actually, the value of our EQ is nothing new. While a noted expert in the field of Emotional Intelligence, Daniel Goleman, PhD psychologist says:
“The rules for work are changing. We’re being judged by a new yardstick: not just by how smart we are, but by how we handle ourselves and each other.”
The concept of Emotional Intelligence and its “cousins” is nothing new. Assorted versions can even be traced back to the ancient philosopher Plato, born circa 428 B.C.. His version in Greek was referred to as Eudaimonia, commonly translated as “happiness” or “success”.
While Dr. Goleman refers to “rules for work” let’s consider it not a “new yardstick”, but one that’s always existed, applies to life as a whole and that only more recently is beginning to be given the credence it has always deserved.
Seriously, what is Emotional Intelligence? In the book “Handle With Care”, Joshua M. Freedman, et al, defines it as: “a way of recognizing, understanding and choosing how we think, feel and act.” Further (paraphrased) that: it shapes our interactions with others and understanding of ourselves – and defines how and what we learn; allows us to set priorities; determines the majority of our daily actions. Research suggests it is responsible for as much as 80% of the "success" in our lives.
I would respectfully disagree with Freedman when he uses the word “choosing”, because when we are completely honest with ourselves, aren’t there times when we react and respond so instantly it is like being on autopilot?
The good news is, if we aren’t pleased with the way our autopilot is functioning, we have the ability to rewrite the program! And, if we are relatively pleased with its responses, isn’t there always room for improvement?
When would EQ prove more valuable than IQ when it comes to a job?
Let’s take a look:
Joe will soon graduate from college with A-average. He has developed exceptional skills and just completed an internship. However, he usually blames others when things go wrong and creates disruptions when working with teams.
Then there is Phil, a B student who earned the same degree as Joe, but will require training from his employer. When it comes to the work environment, Phil takes directions easily, is polite, stays focused, relates well to others and has leadership potential.
So which one would a recruiter more likely hire? Without a doubt, Phil would be the pick. He demonstrates a much greater level of emotional intelligence, with his ability to manage emotions effectively, read and adapt to cultural environment, work effectively with others and be a positive influence on them.
Whether in the workplace or our everyday lives, a greater level of emotional intelligence allows us to deal with change, take criticism and remain more positive in the face of adversity.
In reality, our potential isn’t fixed on the day we are born. It is quite fluid and dependent on multiple internal and external influences. No matter how those influences shaped the way you currently process and interpret life experiences, you have the ability to change it.
So why do most, when given the steps and suggestions that should improve their EQ, find it difficult if not impossible to enjoy the success they’d like in this area?
The reason is that it is all based on logic! While logic has value, when we seek to improve Emotional Intelligence, wouldn’t it seem “logical” to address the history that created our current EI/EQ?
When EFT is used in concert with each step, you are much more likely to succeed. Be it anxiety, self-doubt, procrastination or just about anything else you can name, know with the proper guidance you have the ability to improve your EQ and your outlook.
Interested in increasing your ability to use EFT to increase your EQ and success regardless of your IQ?