How Emotional Intelligence Compared With Traditional Intelligence

Many people believe that emotional intelligence (EI) is just as important as cognitive intelligence (CI). Some even argue that it is more important because you can learn how to control your emotions, whereas learning how to process information and think about things logically requires no such instruction.

However, there are several reasons why this theory of EI being equally or more important than CI is wrong. First, although you cannot directly teach someone to be emotionally intelligent, we do know some strategies that increase your emotional intelligence.

Second, while most experts agree that having high levels of cognitive intelligence is an asset, they differ in their opinions about whether those with higher levels of emotional intelligence are actually happier. In fact, many studies show that individuals who report feeling very happy also have higher levels of what’s called “negative emotionality,” which is characterized by lower levels of empathy, altruism, and other traits related to kindness.

This article will discuss these two points and offer tips for improving your own emotional intelligence.

Relationship between emotional intelligence and happiness

how emotional intelligence compared with traditional intelligence

Recent studies suggest that being emotionally intelligent is linked to greater happiness in your life. This makes sense, because happier people are more likely to show empathy and understanding towards others, as well as use of and control over their emotions.

Many experts believe that developing your emotional intelligence will make you feel better about yourself and help you achieve your goals.

However, there’s one important thing to note – while emotional intelligence is related to happiness, it’t necessarily be easy to measure.

That means we can’t say for sure whether someone is really high in emotional intelligence or not until we have some way to assess how much EQ they have.

Ways to improve one's emotional intelligence

how emotional intelligence compared with traditional intelligence

Over the past few years, there has been a rise in emphasis on what is being referred to as "emotional literacy" or "Emotional Quotient (EQ)". This focus shifts the attention onto how people relate to and handle emotions of other people, and yourself.

Many feel that we are living in an overly-sensitive society where every little thing seems to set off a reaction. There have even been calls for creating a new term - "overly sensitive person"- because some people seem to take things way too seriously.

Research shows that having high EQ can have many positive benefits. These include improved job performance, higher productivity at work, lower levels of stress, and overall happier life.

It was once thought that only wealthy people had high EQ, but this view has changed. Many studies show that young children develop basic skills in emotion regulation early in life, and it is hoped that interventions will begin before students reach school age.

Ways to be more emotional intelligent

how emotional intelligence compared with traditional intelligence

One of the most important things that can help you become more emotionally intelligent is learning how to recognize, understand and manage your emotions.

Many people think that being smart means being able to control or suppress your feelings, but this isn’t it! Being smart means being able to identify and comprehend what makes you feel different emotions.

It also means knowing how to use your emotions to motivate yourself towards achieving your goals.

So what are some ways to learn how to do these? Here we will go over several strategies for improving your emotional intelligence.

Learn to recognize your emotions

how emotional intelligence compared with traditional intelligence

A second way to measure emotional intelligence is by how well you are able to identify your own feelings. You can do this by looking at them, naming them, and understanding what makes you feel different levels of emotion.

Many people believe that only those with high IQs show signs of feeling certain emotions. This isn’t always true! Many smart people don’t seem to easily identify their own emotions.

You should be able to know when you are angry or happy, but many times these individuals simply look like they are not showing any sign of emotion.

If you notice someone who seems very calm and steady, check out whether they appear to be hiding their inner thoughts. If so, ask if they are okay and if everything is all right.

There may also be verbal clues such as changes in tone, speed, and style of speaking. Check for consistency too – why did you say X before? Why are you saying Y now?

Keep in mind that we all have our days where we do not seem like ourselves, but there is usually a reason. Work colleagues will sometimes discover something about you that you do not share.

It is important to understand yourself and your emotions because it has an effect on your life and relationships.

Teach yourself to be emotional intelligent

how emotional intelligence compared with traditional intelligence

Having strong emotions is integral to being successful in life. We all have them, you just need to learn how to manage them and apply them productively towards achieving your goals.

Traditionally, psychologists defined intelligence as something that people are born with, and that it can’t be learned. But research now shows that there is such a thing as “emotional intelligence.” This type of intelligence can be trained through education and self-development programs.

Some experts believe that we should even consider this a separate form of intelligence because it seems like it exists independently from cognitive intelligence — thinking about concepts and reasoning patterns.

This way of thinking about emotion was popularized by psychologist Daniel Goleman back in 1989 when he published his bestseller “Emotion Work.” He described it as the ability to recognize, understand, and regulate our own feelings and those of other people.

Since then, many researchers and professionals have studied emotional intelligence (EI) and validated its importance in success and happiness. Some even claim that it is more important than IQ.

But does having high EI make you happier? Or do happy people tend to have higher EQs?

Here, we will discuss the differences between traditional and emotional intelligences, why some studies say they matter, and what you can do to improve yours.

Look to your peers for emotional intelligence

how emotional intelligence compared with traditional intelligence

Many people believe that only those with high levels of what we call “traditional” or “intellectual” intelligence can show empathy, understanding emotions. This is not true!

It is possible to develop your EQ (emotional quotient) even if you do not have much IQ (intelligence quotient). You can learn how to recognize and manage your own feelings as well as other people’s.

Some theories about why this perception exists include the idea that there are no easy ways to demonstrate emotional intelligence so it seems like an unrealistic goal.

Another theory is that because people who are considered intelligent seem mostly logical and rational, they might perceive such qualities in others as being less emotionally-focused.

However, these theories ignore the fact that most successful individuals were often described as having strong social skills and personality traits such as kindness. A study conducted at Stanford found that the greatest predictor of someone’s success was whether they could identify and understand their own strengths and weaknesses.

Assess your mental health

how emotional intelligence compared with traditional intelligence

One of the most important things you can do to improve your emotional intelligence is to recognize when you are in an emotionally high or low state.

This is called self-awareness. You have it at present because you’re reading this right now. But, as we know, emotions always influence us and those around us, so it really should be part of every person’s daily life.

Self-awareness helps you understand your own feelings and how they affect you and others. It also helps you identify what causes these feelings and why you feel them in certain ways.

Emotions such as joy, sadness, anger, fear, and love all play different roles in our lives. We sometimes forget that!

Many professionals consider having a moderate amount of emotional intelligence to be a must for success in their field. After all, being able to relate to people and control your emotions is a key factor in achieving career success.

But while emotional talent is helpful, too much of a good thing can actually hurt you. Because we often times use our emotions to help us achieve our goals, overusing them can hinder our progress.

That’s why it’s important to note that there is no “perfect” level of emotional intelligence – whatever yours happens to be is just fine.

You can even have lower levels of EI than you think if you don’t acknowledge, accept, and properly manage your emotions.

Practice meditation

how emotional intelligence compared with traditional intelligence

A recent study suggests that emotional intelligence is actually more important than IQ when it comes to success in life. The researchers looked at how well people do their jobs, and whether or not they experience workplace stress. They found that employers who ranked highest for emotional skills also tended to have lower rates of employee turnover and higher job satisfaction.

While having high levels of traditional intelligence (or “IQ”) is certainly helpful, it's not the only factor that predicts successful employment. Being able to manage your emotions and work relationships effectively are just as important.

Practicing mindfulness – which can be done through yoga, meditation or other means – helps develop self-awareness and control over your thoughts and feelings. This, in turn, helps you recognize and deal with emotions that might influence your performance at work.

It also may help reduce stress related health problems, such as hypertension and sleep disorders. And while some experts believe that being smart makes you feel good about yourself, there is research to suggest the opposite — that being intelligent can make you feel bad because you worry that you're not as capable as others.

Research shows that individuals with a low level of empathy tend to enjoy greater social status and power, which could contribute to feeling better about themselves. But this also creates additional challenges, since they may lack understanding of what it feels like to be part of a group or team, and why things go wrong for them.

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