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“Emotional Intelligence” by Daniel Goleman Essay Sample

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“Emotional Intelligence” by Daniel Goleman Essay Sample

In the book “Emotional Intelligence” by Daniel Goleman, the central thesis that he tries to point out is that emotional intelligence may be more important than I.Q. in determining a person’s well being and success in life. At first I didn’t know what Goleman was talking about when he said emotional intelligence, but after reading the book I have to say that I agree completely with Goleman. One reason for my acceptance of Goleman’s theory is that academic intelligence has little to do with emotional life. To me, emotions can be just as intelligent as your I.Q. In this book report I hope to provide sufficient evidence to show why I agree with Goleman’s thesis on emotional intelligence. The first topic that I want to touch on is the idea of academic intelligence having little to do with emotional life. Goleman states that, “Emotional intelligence is the ability to motivate oneself, persist in the face of frustrations, regulate one’s moods and keep distress from swamping the ability to think.” I feel that academic intelligence gives you no preparation for the turmoil and opportunities that life brings.

The funny thing is that our schools and our culture are still fixated on our academic abilities. Even though emotional intelligence is a new concept, the information that does exist suggests it can be as powerful as I.Q. Instead, we should acknowledge emotional intelligence as a set of traits that can matter immensely on our personal lifestyle. How good a person is at these traits shows that they can thrive in life while another person doesn’t. Goleman states, “Emotional aptitude is a meta ability, determining how well we can use whatever other skills we have, including raw intellect.” People that have high emotional intelligence are more likely to be satisfied and effective in their lives. Others who have trouble with this can’t manage themselves so their ability for successful work & clear thought are altered. In contrast to this, you can say that I.Q. is better than emotional intelligence. Having a high I.Q. does offer a lot of benefits. Goleman states that people with a high I.Q. are ambitious, productive, and uneasy with sexual and sensual experience.

That high I.Q. people are the caricature of the intellectual, adept in the realm of mind but inept in the personal world. And all of this is just for the men. Goleman states, “The profiles differ slightly for men and women.” High I.Q. women have intellectual confidence, are fluent in expressing their thoughts and have a wide range of intellectual and aesthetic interests. Goleman also does point out that these are extremes and that everyone mixes I.Q. and emotional intelligence in varying degrees. But this does give us an instructive look at what each of these dimensions adds to a person’s qualities. In the book, “Emotional Intelligence”, Goleman talks about two psychologists (Sternberg and Salovey) who have taken a wider view on intelligence and give terms of what they think it takes to lead a successful life. They mention five domains they think lead up to high emotional intelligence.

These domains are: knowing one’s emotions, managing emotions, motivating oneself, recognizing emotions of others, and handling relationships. If you think about it, these domains are big keys to life. I mean if you don’t have any self-awareness, you are missing a key element of emotional intelligence. How would you be able to ever know what another person is feeling if you can’t even recognize your own feelings. Being able to manage your own emotions builds onto self- awareness. This means you can be able to handle feelings so they are appropriate at that time. Then you have to be able to motivate yourself as well as recognize the emotions of the other person. Empathy is a big part of emotional intelligence also. Not only does it also build on self-awareness, but it’s a big predictor of having people skills. The last domain, handling relationships, is the best predictor of a socially literate person.

If you can handle relationships, you have the skill in managing the emotions in others. You will do well at anything that requires the interaction of others. As Goleman says, ‘…these people are social stars.” All in all, I feel that emotional intelligence is a better predictor of a person’s well being than academic I.Q. Even though emotional intelligence differs from men and women, it is still a more important trait to have than academic intelligence. All of us might still mix I.Q. and emotional intelligence to varying degrees, but of the two, I feel emotional intelligence adds far more of the qualities that make us more human.

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