There is a very well-known debate that considers the comparisons between cognitive intelligence, known as IQ, and emotional intelligence, known as EQ. Proponents of either side of the debate will argue why their argument holds more merit, but the continued address of this debate begs the question, “EQ vs. IQ: Are book smarts more important than street smarts, or vice versa?” This question dives deep into the relative importance of both sides of the debate, cognitive intelligence, and emotional intelligence.
Cognitive intelligence, referred to as IQ, consists of one’s ability to develop memory and sensory skills, process things visually, and practice quantitative reasoning skills. Individuals who possess a more cognitive intelligence than emotional intelligence generally have a more mental capability to think critically, solve problems, plan and reason, think abstractly, comprehend more difficult or complex ideas or thoughts, learn new ideas quickly, and utilize their experiences to do so. With these characteristics, individuals who possess a more cognitive aspect of intelligence reflect a deeper and broader ability to understand their surroundings.
In general, intelligence is either brought out naturally under an intellectual influence or an emotional one. Intelligence that emerges naturally under an emotional influence is known as emotional intelligence. This is referred to as EQ. Individuals who possess more emotional intelligence are typically referred to as having “street smarts” over “book smarts,” which are inhabited by those with more cognitive intelligence. Individuals who have a more emotional aspect to their intelligence are more able to be in control of and/or express their emotions and have the ability to address their interpersonal relationships more empathetically than others. These skills are of great importance as they help to develop effective communication skills, which can often serve a critical role in both success and progress in the workplace environment. It is argued that the smartest people are not always the most successful in life, nor do they lead the most fulfilling lives. While having a high IQ, it is the EQ that will educate these individuals on how to manage and relieve stress and communicate effectively with others.
Is IQ more important than EQ?
There is a debate about whether it is better or more important to possess and develop street smarts which, again, are found in individuals who have a more cognitive intelligence, or street smarts, which are found in those who possess a more emotional intelligence. Advocates for cognitive intelligence will argue that one’s IQ is either more valuable or will serve a greater impact in determining the potential one has in life, or in how to gauge one’s projected success level(s). Proponents for cognitive intelligence will argue that logic, reason, reading and writing, and the ability to analyze and prioritize information and tasks is far more important than the intelligence that develops in the emotional centers of the brain.
However, advocates for emotional intelligence will argue the importance of the ability to communicate effectively, diffuse conflict, and find positive methods of stress relief by controlling their emotions is far more important. Proponents for EQ also point out that emotional intelligence can heavily impact one’s performance in the workplace, physical health, mental health, and relationships. Emotional intelligence allows one the ability to navigate social complexities of the workforce and workplace environments; it is for these reasons that many companies implement EQ testing before hiring job candidates. An individual’s physical health is also gauged by stress levels that develop if one is unable to monitor or control their ability to manage their emotions effectively or positively. These same stress levels can impact one’s mental health, as well, in that people become susceptible to conditions like anxiety and depression if they cannot effectively channel their emotions. With emotional intelligence, these same individuals are able to form strong bonds and relationships that those with more cognitive intelligence may lack, causing them to feel sad or lonely. These same things can impact personal relationships, as emotional intelligence enables a man or woman to empathize with others and communicate and understand problems more effectively.
How do I improve my IQ?
While each person embodies a natural intelligence, it is important to know that these intelligences can be altered. Some may see an importance in developing or maximizing their cognitive intelligence levels, whereas others may find it important to develop their interpersonal skills by enhancing their emotional intelligence levels. One of the most important things to understand about intellectual (cognitive) development is that the mind is a muscle; the more you use and develop it, the stronger it will become. Because of this, fluid intelligence is trainable but, just as a muscle can develop, it can also atrophy. If an individual wanted to alter or strengthen their cognitive intelligence, then he or she must understand his or her starting point. In this, they can evaluate current comprehensive levels. If knowledge is sought and then absorbed, it is important to understand that that same individual must then learn to challenge him or herself. For example, if the same information is learned and relearned the IQ hits its own glass ceiling. In this case, individuals need to train their brains to be challenged; by learning the same information over and over again, the brain will actually become lazy as less cognitive function will be utilized to do the same tasks that may have once took a lot of brain activity to complete. Efficiency, for the purpose of cognitive growth, should be avoided. In order to alter one’s cognitive intelligence levels, he or she needs to think creatively and continuously challenge their brains with new information. Again, the brain is a muscle; if one continues to flex it then it will never stop growing.
How do I improve my EQ?
Just as cognitive intelligence can be developed, so can emotional intelligence. The most important aspect of EQ is the ability to be in touch with the emotional side of others, including oneself. In order to interpret, understand, and empathize with the emotional side of others, an individual should begin with his or her abilities to reflect on his or her own emotions. By first identifying his or her own emotions, one can become more aware and mindful of his or her reactions and begin the process of managing the level of emotional control. With this comes the ability to ask others for their perspective on our beings and our situations. The purpose of this is to learn to see ourselves as others see us, as this provides a different viewpoint and aids in the ability to be observant of others. Developing emotional intelligence skills can be difficult as the development and integration of these skills and habits requires a lot of practice. Whereas cognitive intelligence development embodies more of an intellectual research approach, emotional intelligence development requires a more consistent, internal practice that requires not only patience but time to learn and understand the viewpoints and emotions of others.
There is a very well-known debate that considers the comparisons between cognitive intelligence, known as EQ, and emotional intelligence, known as IQ. Proponents of either side of the debate will argue why their argument holds more merit, but the continued address of this debate begs the question, “EQ vs. IQ: Are book smarts more important than street smarts, or vice versa?” This question dives deep into the relative importance of both sides of the debate, cognitive intelligence and emotional intelligence.
The question about the importance of cognitive intelligence versus emotional intelligence is nothing new. This is a very well-known debate that begs the question, “EQ vs. IQ: Which is more important?” While both cognitive and emotional intelligence embody positive aspects and abilities, it is important that each serves a more beneficial purpose than its counterpart in various situations and, should an individual feel they lack abilities of one of the intelligences that he or she know and understand that the skills lacking can be developed and maximized.