Posts Tagged ‘IQ’

Emotional Quotient is defined as a crucial range of abilities that matter immensely in terms of how we do in life. These range of abilities include self-awareness, self-discipline, and empathy. They add up to a different way of being smart, and are factors at work when people of high IQ flounder and those of modest IQ do surprisingly well.

Although shaped by childhood experience, our emotional quotient can be nurtured and strengthened throughout adulthood – with immediate benefits to our health, our relationships, and our work.

Socrates’ injunction “know thyself” speaks to the awareness of one’s own feelings as they occur.  Psychologists use the term metamood to mean awareness of one’s own emotions.  In reference to Emotional Quotient recognizing a feeling as it happens makes us better pilots of our lives being more certain about how we feel about personal decisions from who to marry to what career move to make.  Being aware of our feelings also makes us better able to shake off a bad mood.

Empathy is defined as understanding another person’s feelings by remembering or imagining being in a similar situation.  It can be broken down in to 3 distinct components: knowing another person’s feelings, feeling what that person feels and responding compassionately to another’s distress.  Empathy leads to acts of altruism which is known to activate emotions that are vital to the maintaining of good health.   Life devoid of empathy begets psychopathic behavior.  The sure sign of any psychopath is deceit and reckless disregard for others’ feeling.  When it comes to empathy psychopaths have none, in fact they have difficulty recognizing fear or sadness in people’s faces or in their voices.  Empathy is an innate quality that can be shaped by experience.  Infants as young at 3 months old exhibit empathy when they get upset at the sound of another baby crying.  The greater your ability to “empathize” the greater your EQ.

It may be hard to believe but that spongy confection made from a soft mixture of sugar, albumen and gelatin – known as marshmallows, can help scientists see the future.  More specifically by watching four year olds interact with them.  The children are put in a plain room one by one and are made a simple offer.  You can have this marshmallow right now, the researcher says, but if you wait while I run an errand, you can have two marshmallows when I get back.  And then he leaves.

Some children go for the marshmallow the moment the researcher leaves the room.  Some last a while longer before they give in.  But others are determined to wait.  When the researcher returns he gives these children their hard-earned marshmallows.

By the time the children reach the age of around 13 something remarkable has happened.  A survey of the children’s parents and teachers found that those who as four-year-olds held out for the second marshmallow generally grew up to be better adjusted, more popular, adventurous, confident and dependable teenagers.  The children who gave in to temptation early on were more likely to be lonely, easily frustrated and stubborn.  They buckled under stress and shied away from challenges.  And when some of the students in the two groups took the Scholastic Aptitude Test, the kids who had held out longer scored an average of 210 points higher.

It seems that the ability to delay gratification is a master skill, a triumph of the reasoning brain over the impulsive one.  It is a sign in short of emotional intelligence.  And it doesn’t show up on IQ tests.

The good news is that EQ – the ability to read your own emotions, to empathize with others and to be disciplined is a skill that can be developed.



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Lines That Divide US

“Educating the mind without educating the heart is no education at all.”  These words, spoken by Aristotle, are too often ignored and the price we pay is high .  When street gangs substitute for families and schoolyard insults end in stabbings it is a sure sign of a lack of empathy.  Being able to empathize is a crucial ability that forms part of Emotional Quotient (EQ) and matters immensely in terms of how we do in life.  Empathy has to do with knowing another person’s feelings, feeling what that person feels and responding compassionately to another’s distress.

Empathy acts as a buffer to cruelty and is a quality known to be lacking in child molesters and psychopaths.  Empathy is also known to lead to acts of altruism which is known to activate emotions that are vital to the maintaining of good health.

Schools that develop emotional literacy programs, designed to help children learn to manage anger, frustration, and loneliness see lunch time fights, for example, decrease from two or three a day to almost none.

How much happier would we be, how much more successful as individuals and civil as a society, if we were more alert to the importance of Emotional Quotient?

Aristotle also wrote: “Anyone can become angry, that is easy, but to be angry with the right person, to the right degree, at the right time, for the right purpose, and the right way — this is not easy.”

The good news is that empathy is an innate quality that can be shaped by experience.  The greater your ability to empathize the greater your EQ.


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The Dark Triad – Part 4 Psychopath

Skip to: Part 1 Intro –       Part 2 Narcissist –      Part 3 Machiavellian

The hallmark of psychopathy is a lack of empathy.  In fact when it comes to empathy, psychopaths have none; they have special difficulty recognizing fear or sadness on people’s faces or in their voices.

In a 2002 Study, David Kosson and Yana Suchy, asked psychopathic inmates to name the emotion expressed in each of 30 faces; compared to controls, Psychopaths had a

significantly lower rate of accuracy in recognizing disgusted facial affect.

Psychopaths are glib and superficially charming, and many psychopaths are excellent mimics of normal human emotion.

The consensus among researchers is that psychopathy stems from a specific neurological disorder which is biological in origin and present from birth.  It is estimated that one percent of the general population are psychopaths.

For Psychopaths other people are just a mark, to be duped, used and discarded.  They lack any sense of guilt or remorse for any harm they may have caused others, instead rationalizing the behavior, blaming someone else, or denying it outright.

Psychopaths also feel no anticipatory fears, they are virtually oblivious to the threat of punishment.

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The Dark Triad – Part 3 Machiavellian

Skip to: Part 1 Intro –        Part 2 Narcissist –        Part 4 Psychopath

Hello Machiavellian

Deriving from the Italian Renaissance diplomat and writer Niccolo Machiavelli, Machiavellianism is defined as “the employment of cunning and duplicity in statecraft or in general conduct”.

For the Machiavellian, the ends justify the means, no matter what human pain he may cause.  They tend to be cynically calculating and arrogant, readily behaving in ways that undermine trust and cooperation.  They see others strictly as things to manipulate for their own ends.

A Machiavellian may not consider his actions to be selfish or evil; he may come up with convincing rationale, even one he believes.  People like North Korea’s Kim Jong-il, for example, may justify his tyranny as needed to protect the state from some sinister enemy, even if only a concocted one.

Some talents of the “Mach” (shorthand) are glib charm and confidence.  They can remain coolheaded in their social interactions, but are uninterested in establishing emotional connections.

Although the Mach shares many traits with Narcissists and Psychopaths such as disagreeable nature and selfishness, he stands alone in his ability to remain realistic about himself and others, neither making

inflated claims nor striving to impress.  The Mach prefers to see things clearly, all the better to exploit them.

Daniel Goleman, in his book Social Intelligence, describes Machs  as having tunnel-vision empathy:  they can bring someone’s emotions into focus mainly when they wish to use that person for their own ends.  Otherwise, Machs are generally poorer at empathetic attunement than others.  The coldness of the Mach seems to result from this core deficit in processing emotions – both in themselves and in others.

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The Dark Triad – Part 2 Narcissist

Skip to: Part 1 Intro –       Part 3 Machiavellian –       Part 4 Psychopath

Hello Narcissist

Narcissists are driven by dreams of glory.  They flourish in the face of difficult challenges  and shine when performance under stress counts the most.

Many Narcissists are drawn to pressured, high-profile jobs where they can use their talents well and the potential laurels are great – despite any risks.  Michael Maccoby, a psychoanalyst who has studied (and treated) narcissistic leaders, observes that the type has become increasingly common at the top echelons of business today as competitive tensions have escalated.

Healthy narcissistic leaders have the ability to analyze their performance and are open to criticism.  But unhealthy narcissists crave to be admired more than to be loved.  They are very much driven to succeed, not because of some standard of excellence but because they want the glory that comes with such success.  They feel free to pursue their goals aggressively, without any thought about how their actions may effect others.

Unhealthy narcissists are not very good empathizers, usually ignoring those who do not feed their striving for glory.  They can lay off multitudes of employees without feeling any sympathy for those for whom those decisions are personal disasters.  In short they have no regrets and are indifferent to the need or feelings of others.

Typically the Narcissist also lacks feelings of self-worth and avoids even constructive criticism in any form.  Rather than listen they prefer to preach and indoctrinate.

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The red horse – Sanguine

“And there went out a horse that was red: and the attribute was given to him that sat thereon to be spontaneous, fun-loving and to have fun in life.  But also given to him was the weakness of arrogance, impulse & constant need for approval.”

Skip to: Part 1 Part 3 Part 4 Part 5


Sanguines more than anything just want to have fun.  The sooner we accept this the sooner we can come to the realization that they will never grow up and get down to business.

While sanguines want to have fun in life and appear to have no serious requirements for happiness, underneath it all they have a deep craving for approval.  Sanguines feed on compliments and criticism wounds  them deeply.  If a sanguine doesn’t have approval they will wilt in to uselessness.  On the other hand given praise and encouragement the sanguine will go to extremes to please you, for they want to be loved.  Everyone likes attention and approval, but for the sanguine it is an emotional need.

Sanguines are usually married to Melancholies who see no reason to give praise to something that’s not done properly in the first place and who feel constant criticism will provide positive motivation.  While the Melancholy may have applauded the Sanguine’s humor before marriage, it soon wears thin and after a while the Melancholy wont even sit in the audience, let alone clap enthusiastically.  Sanguines can always charm someone in to being their friend, and soon begin to wonder why the only person who doesn’t think he/she is cute is their mate.  The combination of an outgoing personality and the need for attention makes the Sanguine the most vulnerable for temptation from the opposite sex.

Sanguines become depressed when they are deprived of fun and attention.  When a Sanguine gets depressed, for example, because a check just bounced, contrary to logic they go out and treat everyone in sight.

They must be accepted by their friends and buying their way to popularity is one way of cheering themselves up while denying there is any problem.  Besides buying things, treating everyone in sight and starting new ventures the sanguine also handles depression by overeating.  Of course this ends in futility for the Sanguine loves clothes and gets additionally depressed when nothing seems to fit right anymore.

While a sanguine without a spotlight may become lonely and depressed, a change of scene or outlook will help them bounce back again.

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IQ & Success

thinkerA person’s intellectual level, based on a test and represented by a number determines his/her IQ level.  The higher the number, according to the test, the more intelligent the person is, but does high intellect guarantee success in life?

Royane Real in her book “How you can be smarter” writes about a Canadian television program that tracked down some of the people with the highest IQ scores in North America.  One man who has an extremely high genius IQ works as a motorcycle mechanic, hangs out with biker gangs, and is frequently in and out of jail.  Another man she tracked down is a man named  Chris Langan.   He is said to have the highest recorded IQ in the world.  His IQ measures at around 190-210 (Einstein’s was 180-190).  He has worked as a bouncer in a bar for ten years, earns minimum wage, and lives in a tiny garage. Many people with IQs of 160 work for people with IQs of 100.  Clearly, a high IQ is not enough to predict who will succeed in life.

Among the ingredients for success, researchers now generally agree that IQ accounts for about 20%.  The rest depends on everything from class to luck, opportunity and timing.  Some critics say that the only thing IQ tests can really predict is who will do well on IQ tests.

But in reality whether we realize/like it or not we link IQ to success.  After all that’s why most of us are amazed when we hear about the high IQ of an individual.  We are amazed by virtue of our “assumption” that they will be able to achieve great things, run a major corporation or find a cure for a major disease through their exceptionally high intellect.

Of course all of this begs the question: what is success really?  Is its definition even objective? Success may mean one thing to me and something entirely different to the next person.  You may point to some one’s financial position to gauge success while someone else may use being fit/healthy or indeed smart as their definition of success.  All these things however ultimately point to the same thing – happiness.  Because we assume the wealthy person will be happy because of their money, the fit person will be happy about their health and the smart person happy about their intelligence.

This is why many people use as their gauge of success Relational Intelligence (RI).  It is, in my opinion the ultimate gauge of success because it transcends all other measurements.  Relational Intelligence doesn’t measure success by your intellect, the amount of money you have in your bank account, the car you drive or the size of the home you live in, because if you had all the money in the world but no meaningful relationships, no authentic friends to share your wealth or happiness with – you would have nothing.  The surest way to success (happiness) is a life rich in rewarding relationships.  Relationally intelligent people understand how short life is, that one day this life will end and proceed accordingly .  You can have all the success in the world measured by any other yard stick but true success comes from the happiness that you can only get by loving and being loved.

The good news is that relational intelligence (RI) — the ability to connect with other people by learning to read their heart is a skill that can be developed.


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