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Thursday, August 11, 2011

Does Your Character Lack Emotional Intelligence?

Look at the following list of characteristics and see if your character suffers from any of them.

□ Poor impulse control
□ Inability to focus
□ Pessimistic
□ Disrespectful
□ General unhappiness with self
□ Aggressive
□ Fearful
□ Over-reactive
□ Lack of empathy
□ Mistrustful
□ Destructive
□ Floods with anxiety
□ Non-assertive
□ Falls apart under stress
□ Sulky
□ Seeks immediate gratification
□ Uncaring
□ Chronically sad or angry
□ Impolite, rude
□ Preoccupied with negativity
□ Passive
□ Emotionally inappropriate
□ Whiny
□ Overly sensitive to criticism

If so, he or she lacks emotional intelligence! Research has shown that a person's Intellectual Intelligence has little to do with how successful they are as much as their Emotional Intelligence (EQ). We all know people who are academically brilliant and yet are socially inept and unsuccessful. What they are missing is emotional intelligence!

So now that you know what's wrong with your character (HA! Wish it were that simple...) come back next Thursday as we discuss the four parts of emotional intelligence and how you can help bring your character through a better character arc by addressing one or more of the areas.

Let's look really quickly at the difference in men and women who have a high IQ versus men and women who have a high EQ.

(On the EQ graph, men are represented on the top, women on the bottom.)

Q4U: I will be going more in depth about this concept the next Thursday, but before then, what do you think emotional intelligence is? (And I will know if you look this up...) :-P

Don't forget: The giveaway is still going on for Angie Breidenbach's Gems of Wisdom (a great book for your writing shelf). Click here!


Keli Gwyn said...

Jeannie, I'm going to take the challenge and venture a guess, not an easy thing to do for a perfectionist like me, but I'm s-t-r-e-t-c-h-i-n-g myself this morning. :-)

I think, after reading your post, that emotional intelligence involves shifting one's focus from self to others. Rather than directing one's attention inwardly, an emotionally intelligent person embraces and values interactions with others, which helps stave off the negative aspects of being self-focused.

I'll be eager to read your upcoming posts to see how close I came or how far off the mark I am.

Shilpa Mudiganti said...

Interesting post Jeannie. I think emotional intelligence is an indicator of the balance within a person. Balance between optimism and pessimism. Balance between extreme reactions. Balance between confidence and over-confidence. A person with high EQ might be feeling good about himself/herself. That is my guess. Waiting for the follow up posts! :)

Jeannie Campbell, LMFT said...

i think these are both great stabs at the concept!

thanks for stretching yourself, keli! (for a perfectionist as yourself...i know how hard that is!) :)

Anonymous said...

Yikes! My character is definitely lacking some emotional intelligence. Not completely - she does have a relatively strong head on her shoulders, but she could use some help. It might be time for a session with you.

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Both comments and questions are welcome. I hope you enjoyed your time on the couch today.