Emotional Intelligence

What is Emotional Intelligence?

Have you ever wondered why some people seem to succeed at school, at work, in relationships, etc. while others of equal – or even higher – intelligence don’t?

Are these people just lucky? Is it their looks? Do they pay someone? – more than likely it is something termed emotional intelligence, which is often referred to as EQ. Research has shown that EQ is often a far better predictor of life success than IQ.

Emotional intelligence is a set of abilities that lets you form optimal relationships with yourself and others. EQ is the capacity for recognizing your own feelings and those of others, for motivating yourself, for managing emotions well in yourself and in your relationships.

The four competencies of EQ are:

  1. Self-awareness: Recognizing your emotions and their effects; knowing your strengths and limitations; and having a strong sense of your capabilities and self-worth.
  2. Self-management: managing your emotions by keeping disruptive emotions and impulses in check; and channeling your feelings and resources to enhance your performance and productivity.
  3. Relationship Awareness: your ability to sense others’ feelings and perspectives; read and understand the dynamics of relationships; and anticipate, recognize and meet key constituents’ needs.
  4. Relational Management: your adeptness at inducing desirable responses in others through communication, collaboration, influence and relationship-building.

The truth about EQ:

  • EQ does not mean merely “being nice.”
  • EQ isn’t synonymous with “being emotional” and doesn’t mean giving free rein to feelings.
  • Females don’t necessarily have a higher EQ than males.
  • Our level of EQ is not fixed genetically, nor does it develop only in early childhood.
  • Emotional intelligence can develop over time.
  • Training, coaching, and feedback can also substantially improve emotional intelligence

~Adapted from &, and Dr. Gary Oliver

Gary J. Oliver, ThM, PhD
Executive Director at Center for Healthy Relationships | + posts

Dr. Oliver is the Executive Director of The Center for Healthy Relationships, and professor of Psychology and Practical Theology at John Brown University.  He has authored over 20 books and more than 350 professional and popular articles.  Dr. Oliver has over 40 years’ experience as a Clinical Psychologist, Marriage  & Family Therapist and Spiritual Director.  He leads seminars & workshops both nationally and internationally on a variety of counseling-related issues, healthy relationships as well as Emotional & Relational Intelligence (ERI).

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