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Emotional Intelligence

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Emotional Intelligence is the awareness of our own emotions as a basis for improving motivation and our awareness of the emotions of others (empathy), which is the basis for improving our interpersonal relationships.
The book "Emotional Intelligence", by Danial Goleman, has brought about  a widespread acknowledgement of the importance of emotional factors in achieving good interpersonal relations and successfully applying our life skills in all areas of our life. He points to the high price, that our society pays each day, because of poor interpersonal communication and a scarcity of life skills. Violence becomes the language of our emotions in the family and on the streets.

Our emotional brain works very differently from our rational brain.
As the great philosopher and  scientist, Blaise Pascal, wrote, nearly 400 years ago : "The heart has its reasons, which reason does not know".In every meeting with another person, our emotional brain checks our subconscious emotional memories with lightening speed, to determine whether this person is familiar or a stranger, friend or foe.Only after this first classification by our emotional brain, does our rational brain start to remember exact details about this person.Our emotional brain has no idea of time and regards the emotional wounds of our childhood as still existing today , which may shape our behaviour in a very inappropriate way in times of crisis (anger or fear), when problems are seen as a threat to our existence.
Our two brains,the emotional and the rational, function in complete harmony , most of the time.The emotions feed into and inform the actions of the rational brain, while the rational brain moderates the reactions of the emotions, and sometimes blocks them.Sometimes, however, the two brains create diametrically opposed behaviour.For example, a woman who boasted about her successful divorce and expressed her indifference towards her ex-husband, while her eyes streamed with tears.Her words expressed the will of her rational mind, while her tears expressed her emotional mind.

What are the main elements of Emotional Intelligence? 
* Awareness of our own emotions
* Managing feelings
* Self-motivation
* Awareness of other people's feelings

Awareness of our own emotions is the key to the successful navigation of our lives and the creation of appropriate life-skills that help us to manage our daily lives.
People who deny or repress their feelings, are unable to distinguish between bodily feelings and emotions and and find it difficult to recognize or understand correctly the behaviour of other people.

Managing feelings - the extent to which we can produce an appropriate response to our emotions-  - depends on the depth of our self-awareness. The ability to calm and console ourselves, to release ourselves from anxieties,and to recover fast from disappointments  ; are life-skills which provide us the keys to success.
The research of the psychologist, Martin Seligman, shows that optimism is a decisive factor in success and of the most important life-skills. Research on university students, sportsmen and sales agents, shows the importance of the right attitude towards obstacles and failures - in causing success in the future as well as improving our daily life-skills.Pessimists see the reason for their failure in their own defects, which they are powerless to change.Self-blame paralyzes them.On the other hand, optimists see their failures as a process of learning, empowering them to change the future.
Hope is a life-skill more precious than gold . We can learn from Thomas Edison who didn't give up, despite thousands of failures, in his attempts to create the first practical electric-light bulb.

Creating self-motivation:
 Mobilzing our feelings to achieve our goals is a vital step towards paying constant attention, creating self-motivation and developing creativity. The marshmallow experiment is an impressive piece of research.A group of four-year olds was given a marshmallow and promised another, only if they could wait 20 minutes when left alone in a room.15 years later, there was a huge difference between the social functioning ability and the IQ of the children who immediately ate the marshmallow, and those who were able to restrain themselves and receive two in reward.The ability to delay gratification is important for life success.

The ability to  enter a state of  "flow"' enables  outstanding performances of all kinds.Goleman writes that 'flow" appears in an area where we are challenged to do our best and produce our peak ability.
Each one of us has an area of mastery, a talent or accumulation of knowledge and wisdom.Everyone has life-skills, which we must discover,esteem and cultivate, gradually widening their scope, until they encompass our whole life-space.
We can use Life Coaching to reveal our strengths and virtues and learn how to channel them into the different areas of our life so we can use them every day.


Awareness of other people's feelings.
By the age of two and a half, the differences in behaviour between  children who received enough encouragement and empathy, to express a variety of emotions, and those who have learnt to repress certain emotions, is clearly visible.

People, who can put themselves in other's  shoes, develop superb human relations and acquire life-skills, that enable them to function effectively.
Life Coaching can help reveal the barriers to effective human relations in people who find it difficult to recognize and understand the feelings of those surrounding them. Likewise, NLP techniques ca n be used to help change patterns of behaviour and patterns of thought, producing positive 'internal representations".

Another ally of Emotional Intelligence is  "Spiritual Intelligence".

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