Let’s Talk About Emotional Intelligence

Although in recent times there has been a lot of talk about emotional intelligence, it is not only about knowing emotions but also about teaching our children to put reasoning to work together with them.

Lawrence E. Shapiro, in his book Emotional Intelligence in Children, says that persistence, optimism, self-motivation, and friendly enthusiasm, are qualities demonstrated by children that are part of what is called emotional intelligence. Emotional intelligence, or emotional quotient (EC), is not based on a child’s degree of rational intelligence, but rather on personality characteristics or what we simply call “character.”

Researchers have found that these social and emotional abilities generally have a greater impact on life success than intellectual ability.

What is really emotional intelligence or EC?

The term “emotional intelligence” was first used in 1990 by psychologists Peter Salovey (Harvard University) and John Mayer (University of New Hampshire). Using it to describe the emotional qualities that seem to be the most important for success in life. These may include:

  • Empathy

  • The expression and understanding of feelings

  • Control of our passions

  • The independence

  • The ability to adapt

  • Sympathy

  • The ability to solve problems interpersonally

  • Persistence

  • Cordiality

  • Kindness

  • Respect

The person who promoted this concept of emotional intelligence was Daniel Goleman with his 1995 book Emotional Intelligence , becoming a Bestseller that even excited Bill Clinton, president of the United States, because this emotional concept extends to the workplace and practically all relationships and relationships. human endeavors.

And the IQ?

In fact, at an educational level, nowadays IQ (intellectual coefficient) is less and less important. However, in our society, a very interesting paradox is taking place: while each generation of children seems to become more intelligent than the previous one, their emotional and social capacities seem to be decreasing dramatically. In his book The Optimistic Child ( The optimistic child ), psychologist Martin Seligman writes about what he described as an epidemic of depression has increased almost 10 – fold among children and adolescents in the last 50 years and is now producing at ages earlier.

We find very powerful reasons in a high rate of alarm in the advancement of technology, television has more and more channels, better programming, better graphics, as well as video games and do not talk about the applications on tablets, cell phones and novel systems that allow you to work wonders with programs that generate a codependency for their sounds, movements, colors and rewards when going from one level to another, the Internet with social networks, the expansion of sites where you can obtain a very wide range of information and Everything that makes us try a “virtual” life automatically decreases the possibility of developing our social skills, putting our emotional qualities into practice in the field of action, which can only be found by interacting with other human beings. Although it has a lot of weight, it is not the only thing that happens today, the rate of increase in divorces, the lack of respect for schools as a source of authority, the increasingly reduced time of parents with their children, the economic situation that forces both to work, etc., is also part of the negative emotional consequences of these times.

If we see it from the social point of view, we will realize that the changes to which our society is subjected are tremendously fast and we have less and less room for functional personal communication. Evolution and transformations are inevitable. This is where we can ask ourselves the long-awaited question so how can I raise happy, healthy and productive children? The answer that Shapiro gives us in his book Emotional Intelligence in Children is surprising: “You have to change the way your child’s brain develops.”

If we want to promote the development of emotional intelligence in our children, we must start with our own. Here I share five effective practices to achieve it and take action immediately:

Spend quality family time by eliminating television

Take advantage of breakfast, lunch and / or dinner to talk about pleasant things, being really interested in how the day, the week, an event or something transcendent for them went and also share your emotions.

Choose “respond” and avoid “reacting”

In situations that put your negative emotions into play, train your reason to channel your energy when it can end in an emotional outburst. Be an example, because your children learn more from your actions than from your words.

Get your kids to socialize

Give them the opportunity to join groups where there is personal improvement and positive attitudes, from a very young age.

Read good books to your children

Share readings and audios as a family, especially with stories of successful people.

Give a new look to your personal relationships

Seek to associate yourself in groups of people with goals, objectives and who always have an action plan.

When our focus changes, our attitudes change as well. With these five points you can change your example and the environment at home, so that they are adequate for your children to be successful. The moment is now! In the second part of this article I will give you other important action points for a fulfilling emotional life.

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