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©Arlene R. Taylor, PhD

articles200408Most people want to be successful. Many have no idea how to get there. Fewer still understand the role that Emotional Quotient or EQ skills plays in helping a person  achieve success.

At birth, if you were fortunate enough to land in an environment where the adults exhibited high EQ, you at least got to observe them—whether or not you chose to build skills for yourself. If, on the other hand, those in your environment had not a clue—you missed that advantage. Nevertheless, since skills that contribute to your EQ are learned—not inherited—you can begin building them any time, and the sky is the limit.

How do EQ skills increase your risk for success? They help you identify what feels good, what feels bad and how to get from bad to good in ways that result in positive outcomes.

Here is a partial list of specific characteristics linked with high EQ.

  • Aware and calm
  • Peaceful and satisfied
  • Balanced sense of self-worth
  • Happy, grateful, and appreciative
  • Energetic and motivated
  • Interdependent rather than excessively dependent or ruthlessly independent
  • Contented and consistent
  • Able to perceive and expect success

Those are the behaviors I want in myself. Also, in my closest friends and in anyone I might hire. 

Although I never met Socrates personally, he reportedly said: the unexamined life is not worth living.

Examine your EQ skills—however uncomfortable it may seem initially. Since you tend to stop maturing emotionally when you experience severe trauma, it’s worth identifying what has happened to you along with your typical behaviors. Explore the history of your biological ancestors—if possible. What you learn may be hard pills to swallow but you can deal effectively only with what you can identify, label, and describe.

High EQ helps you recognize low EQ behaviors quickly—which enables you to course-correct and protect yourself, as needed. The outcome? The liklihood of a higher SQ or Success Quotient.  

Low EQ behaviors are uniformly unhelpful. See Part 3.