Having a high Intelligence Quotient (IQ) does not guarantee success, happiness or virtue. Emotional Intelligence, as defined by Wikipedia, is the ability to identify, assess, and control the emotions of oneself, of others, and of groups. Some of the most outwardly successful people are the most inwardly dysfunctional. It used to be that mental intelligence reigned supreme and opened the doors to the Ivy League and secured seats at the most sought after tables and events. In recent years, Emotional Literacy (EQ) has become the new IQ. Top colleges and universities are looking at whom the applicants are with as much weight as they look at how the applicant tests and performs academically. Heart performance is becoming as important as head performance.
In his book Emotional Intelligence, Daniel Goleman identifies our “two minds”, the rational and the emotional, and how they impact and create our reality.
Emotional literacy is not fixed early in life. Every parent, teacher, employer—anyone interested in a more civil society—has a stake in this concept – that social and emotional skills can be taught at any age. Our educational systems strive to prepare our children for their futures academically, but are they getting an emotional education? Emotional Literacy and similar programs are beginning to spring up in schools across the country
Organizations like Challenge Day and The Mosaic Project offer programs and workshops that transform youth and school communities through experiential courses that teach kindness, inclusion and respect for diversity.
Clearly, there is a need for a blend of academic education and emotional education in our schools’ curriculums, as both kinds of intelligence are necessary for real success.