What Is Emotional Intelligence?

Emotional intelligence is the ability to identify and manage your own emotions and the emotions of others. It is generally said to include 3 skills:

1. Emotional awareness, including the ability to identify your own emotions and those of others;

2. The ability to harness emotions and apply them to tasks like thinking and problems solving;

3. The ability to manage emotions, including the ability to regulate your own emotions, and the ability to cheer up or calm down another person.

Recent Posts on Emotional Intelligence

Curious Criticism? Or do you get defensive?

Don't lose opportunities to grow.

How Social You Are in College Predicts Loneliness at Midlife

By Guy Winch Ph.D. on April 30, 2015 in The Squeaky Wheel
Can we predict who might be at risk for becoming lonely later in life?

Smart Leaders Know They Need to Put Their Phones Away

By Craig Dowden Ph.D. on April 29, 2015 in The Leader's Code
How smartphones can undermine the most important relationships of our lives.

Why Women Put Themselves Down

By Denise Cummins Ph.D. on April 29, 2015 in Good Thinking
Women usually respond to compliments by putting themselves down. Research shows that the reason for this is not low self-esteem or self-hatred. Instead, it is something far more subtle, strategic...and powerful.

3 Reasons You Need Mental Strength to Thrive

Building mental strength will help you reach your greatest potential, despite whatever challenges you face.

How Well Do You Understand Your Emotions?

By Guy Winch Ph.D. on April 24, 2015 in The Squeaky Wheel
How tuned in are you to your emotions?

The Most Important Thing To Know During Bipolar Episodes

By Tom Wootton on April 23, 2015 in Bipolar Advantage
There is one specialized type of knowledge that trumps all of the others during states of mania and depression, knowing how to function while in the state. While all the other types of knowledge are interesting, knowing how to function can literally be the difference between life and death.

Revisiting “Be Here Now”

Being here now is a term that is often misunderstood. Rather that use spiritual practice to avoid feelings, what would it mean to embrace our feelings?

Technology May Be Ruining Your Ability to Read Emotions

Research shows how our digital world may be taking a toll on our emotional intelligence.

You Can't Fix Everything

I’m much more at peace since I stopped trying to fix everyone’s life, including my own. It’s making it easier to take those unfixable moments in stride and to appreciate happiness and joy when they happen to come my way.

3 Tips for Seeking Compassion When Emotionally Distressed

By Guy Winch Ph.D. on April 19, 2015 in The Squeaky Wheel
When you want to reach out after an emotionally distressing event, which person is more likely to be compassionate and supportive, someone who has been through a similar experience or someone who has not? Read on to find out...

10 Tips to Change From Reactive to Proactive in Situations

All of us encounter experiences in life when we may be temporally overwhelmed by a negative emotion, be it anger, pressure, nervousness, despair, or confusion. In these situations, how we choose to “master the moment” can make the difference between proactive versus reactive, and confidence versus insecurity. Here are ten ways to be less reactive in difficult situations...

Dealing with Difficult People: Lessons from Iran and Cuba

By Aldo Civico Ph.D. on April 14, 2015 in Turning Point
What can the meeting between Barack Obama and Raul Castro and the framework agreement between the United States and Iran teach us to deal with difficult people?

Add Humor to Your Job and Boost Your Career

Take the brave step of experimenting with more well-placed humor at your job. By going outside your normal comfort zone with some easy-to-follow tips, you may develop a much more appealing work environment for yourself, and advance your career.

8 Ways a Teacher Is Like a Leader

When most people think of a leader, archetypes often include the president of a country, the boss of a company, or a general in the military. But can a teacher be equated to a leader?

The Real Dangers of “Diagnosing” Everyone a Narcissist

By Craig Malkin on April 12, 2015 in Romance Redux
The current promiscuous use of "narcissist" not only trivializes the pain of people who've suffered greatly in abusive relationships, it generates massive confusion about what narcissism really is. Here's the truth about narcissism and narcissists--and why we need to stop, take a breath, and think carefully before we use either word as an insult.

The Psychology of Imprinting

By Adrian Furnham Ph.D. on April 12, 2015 in A Sideways View
There are fascinating stories of how animals get attached to those of a quite different species because of critical period imprinting. Can this process begin to help us understand why we are attracted to very different kinds of people?

Do the Brain Dance

Dancing stretches the mind and exercises the heart making us physically and emotionally stronger. Dancing communicates deep feelings and connects us to others in intimate ways. Dancing imparts meaning and a sense of accomplishment. Dancing is positive psychology in action. Put it to work in your classroom.

12 Ways to Replenish Your Energy

By Marcia Reynolds Psy.D. on April 11, 2015 in Wander Woman
Do you feel exhausted at the end of the day, with little energy left for family and friends? This post will help you look at what you do that leaves you feeling drained, and then provides tips for revitalizing yourself so you have energy left for the evening.

3 Big Obstacles to Change and How to Overcome Them

By Craig Malkin on April 09, 2015 in Romance Redux
Recently, Justin Bieber’s been trying to overhaul his image. Reception has been mixed, mostly because some people doubt the sincerity of his efforts, but his attempts, as well as the skepticism surrounding them, have highlighted a truth that resonates for us all: It’s really hard to change. Here's why—and what you can do about it.

Can’t Help How You Feel? Yes You Can!

By Erin Olivo Ph.D. on April 09, 2015 in Wise Mind Living
Declutter your mind and clean out any negative thought patterns—because your thoughts are not facts.

The Four Types of Attraction

By Jen Kim on April 07, 2015 in Valley Girl With a Brain
You know the story: Boy meets girl. Boy falls in love with girl. Boy and girl have their happily ever after—well at least those relationships that don't end in divorce do. Every part makes sense except for boy falls in love with girl. Why her? Why not another girl? The answer is simple: Attraction. Naturally my next question is: What makes someone attractive?

Why You're Stronger Than You Think

Second-guessing your ability to deal with challenges could prevent you from reaching your greatest potential. The best way to respond to self-doubt is by proving yourself wrong.

The Gifts of Depression

By Tom Wootton on April 07, 2015 in Bipolar Advantage
Manic-depression left a decisive scar across generations of my family. For each of us who bears that mark, moods have conferred advantage, as well as disability. I don’t mean the energy of hypomania. That’s a fun enough ride, while it lasts. But it’s nothing compared to the unexpected and enriching gifts of depression, like patience, humility, insight, and empathy.

The 7 Secrets of a Happy Brain

How do educators help wire the naturally curious and optimistic student's brain? How do they activate the executive functions essential to learning in nurturing and not harsh ways? Unlocking the secrets of the happy brain is the key to happy classrooms.

Employee Conflict: Fighters vs. Flighters

Categorizing your workforce with this simple "psychology" may not be scientifically accurate, but it can help keep you sane.

8 Signs You're in a Relationship with a Sexual Narcissist

Sexual narcissism can be defined as a grandiose sense of one’s sexual prowess which, in the mind of the sexual narcissist, entitles him or her to engage in acts of emotional and physical manipulation at the partner’s expense. How do you know when your partner may be a sexual narcissist? Here are eight telltale signs...

The Paradox of Self-Pity

Everybody knows someone who's steeped in the language of self-pity. All they talk about is how rough they have it. They constantly seek sympathy, to the point where they turn others off. But contrary to what they're putting out there, such people usually have no real sympathy for themselves.

4 Ways to Boost Your Charisma

Most people think that charisma is a mysterious quality that people are born with. However, there has been a century of research on charisma, and nearly a half-century focusing specifically on what makes a person charismatic. As a result of this work, we can measure and enhance charisma.

7 Scientifically Proven Benefits of Gratitude

Take a few minutes each day to acknowledge all that you have to be thankful for. Showing just a little bit of gratitude can transform your life in incredible ways.