Sunday, November 24, 2013

Emotional Intelligence

Recently I've been reading some of Daniel Goleman's work on Emotional Intelligence.  It is certainly important and not just because of the type of work that I do in counseling.   Goleman writes that emotional intelligence, or EQ, among other characteristics, has a lot to do with knowing one's emotions and being able to manage those emotions.  For example, some individuals seek counseling because they have an anger management problem.  Some are even sent by the courts to learn how to manage their anger.  Did you notice the phrase used to describe their situation; it was "anger management."  The ability to be aware of one's anger and, then, managing that anger or energy is an important skill.  The Bible says we are to "Be angry, and yet do not sin." (Ephesians 4:26.)  There are things in life about which we need to be angry.  I'm angry, for example, about the injustices in our world such as blaming the economic problems on the poor, racial and gender prejudice, global warming, etc.  To be angry is one step, but the next is how to manage that anger or energy as a way of trying to make a difference.  I think one of those managing ways is to speak up--"Don't let the sun go down on your anger" as Ephesian 4:26 completes the prescription.  Lord, may I not loose my voice when I see or hear injustice, but speak in a truthful manner and tone that "Lays aside falsehood and speaks the truth." (Ephesians 4:25.)  I like truth when I see it in a respected researcher such as Daniel Goleman and the scriptures.