Community//

The Importance of EQ vs IQ

Emotional Intelligence - mastering our emotions.

As we grew up most of us were taught that it is our IQ (Intelligence Quotient) which will define us and play the major role in determining whether we will be successful in life personally or professionally. In fact that isn’t true, as studies now show our EQ (Emotional Intelligence) to be the more important key to a satisfying and successful life in every aspect: home, work, relationships and our other endeavours.

Naturally, IQ is important and is assessed  by a series of standardised tests measuring human intelligence. We have to use our intelligence to reason and to safely navigate daily life and its many challenges and whilst that may be the ability that gets us a great job, it won’t necessarily be what makes us successful. Current thinking, as quoted by Daniel Goleman in his book “Emotional Intelligence: Why it can matter more than IQ” …. says ‘CEO’s are hired for their intellect and business expertise – and fired for a lack of emotional intelligence’.  It is also noted that EQ counts for 58% of performance in a job which in turn has  been proved to generate higher income and the single biggest predictor of success in the workplace.

That’s quite a statement to ponder but it makes sense. EQ is how well we understand ourselves, how we relate to others, our reactions to any given situation and the management of our emotions. It is this self-knowledge which has the biggest impact on our lives and our careers and  ultimately determines our success on many fronts. Mastering our emotions is essential at the most basic level to interact lawfully and peaceably within society and, at the next level, predicts our success within personal relationships and professional success.

Caroline Dowd-Higgins a Career Consultant, quotes Goleman’s definitions of strong EQ to be identified by the following 7 characteristics which are basically self-descriptive. They are:  1. Getting Along Well and Having an Interest in Others (being an attentive listener and sincerely curious about others). 2.  Self-Awareness of Strengths &  Weaknesses (unafraid of and able to learn from negative criticism; self-confidence) 3. Operating with Integrity (being trustworthy and conscientious whether visible or not). 4. Self-Awareness of Feelings (being able to objectively analyse the reasons for a particular emotion). 5. Present-Focused (able to move on from a mistake and focus on a solution in the moment). 6. Self-Motivated (confidence and a drive to achieve goals). 7. Well-placed boundaries (understanding time and energy for a task or in a relationship and the ability to say ‘no’). 

These seven categories are useful to paint a broad brush picture to direct our focus. They help develop self-awareness so that we can recognise there are also many essential nuances contained within them. They show us whether we need to work on improving aspects of our way of being in the world: are we genuinely loving, are we kind, are we compassionate, empathetic and tolerant of those who may be different from us? Do we accept that ours isn’t the only possible point of view and  are we open enough to listen, discuss and learn about possible alternative ways of conducting our lives?  

Our emotional intelligence defines our level of maturity, who we are and how we function as human beings both within our family units and in our communities. It will also determine how we deal with stressful situations or challenges, which are an unavoidable part of life experiences. Our attitudes are reflected in our behaviour and impact everyone we come in contact with. Let’s make sure we can make a sincere and authentic impression because in turn that becomes a validation for our own healthy sense of well-being.

    The Thrive Global Community welcomes voices from many spheres. We publish pieces written by outside contributors with a wide range of opinions, which don’t necessarily reflect our own. Learn more or join us as a community member!
    Share your comments below. Please read our commenting guidelines before posting. If you have a concern about a comment, report it here.

    You might also like...

    Community//

    19 Key Facets of Emotional Intelligence in Leadership & Workplace

    by Miles Anthony Smith
    woman doing yoga post
    Community//

    Is Emotional Intelligence Key to Improving Health & Wellness?

    by Bethany Halland
    Community//

    Emotional Intelligence, The Missing Piece in Our Homes, Schools, and Workplaces Today

    by Daniel Puder

    Sign up for the Thrive Global newsletter

    Will be used in accordance with our privacy policy.

    Thrive Global
    People look for retreats for themselves, in the country, by the coast, or in the hills . . . There is nowhere that a person can find a more peaceful and trouble-free retreat than in his own mind. . . . So constantly give yourself this retreat, and renew yourself.

    - MARCUS AURELIUS

    We use cookies on our site to give you the best experience possible. By continuing to browse the site, you agree to this use. For more information on how we use cookies, see our Privacy Policy.