Intellectual Intelligence IQ vs. Emotional Intelligence EQ (Which Matters Most)

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Ever hear of “emotional intelligence,” EQ? We all tend
to think success is all about smarts, about having
a high IQ. It isn’t. Emotional intelligence or EQ
is much more important to success. Having a low EQ is actually
not a fun experience and may be in fact basically the same sort
of thing as having high-functioning autism, at least in some ways.
Low EQ often makes a person isolated and miserable — but it can be learned!
Here are some great “self-help” resources for you!

Republished August 23, 2020
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Intellectual Intelligence (IQ)
vs. Emotional Intelligence (EQ)
(Which Is more Important to Success)?

Self-Help: Turns Out, Success in Life
Mainly Has to do with Emotional Intelligence
(And EQ Can Be Learned)

The Daily Walk with Love, updated August 23, 2020, by Paul Evans (email

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What Is EQ – Emotional Intelligence?

Related is Poverty, Self-actualization, Maslow, the hierarchy of Needs and Acceptance, The Daily Walk with Love, (originally published March 17, 2013), by Paul Evans.

This article is really personally important for me, so I have revised and re-edited it a couple of times and publish it fairly often. I have a pretty high IQ, but (what perhaps has amounted to) a sadly low EQ (although I hope its getting better). I think any low EQ I may have has to do with what I see as my “high functioning autism” (although it I have autism, it has never been diagnosed). Could it be that, functionally, I have low EQ and high functioning autism, and that functionally this basically amounts to the same thing? I think many people are “high functioning autistic” in that they lack emotional skills for coping and succeeding in life, and successfully, empathetically interacting with people. I think a lot of very logical computer geek type people are in the same boat, I run into this all the time in conversations with tech support people who spend all their time with computers. It came to me that it’s fairly easy to have a bunch of friends or followers online, since online people don’t really know you. But perhaps a good measure of how high your emotional intelligence is would be how many friends you have in real life (no Mikey, virtual friends don’t count lol). Actually, I have few real friends in real life (although there are reasons, such as my poverty and lack of a car, but what friends I do have are good and steadfast friends over many years, such as my old buddy Bert and my new counselors where live, maybe especially Zach, but all the guys where I live. So, based on that hypothesis, I would conclude that to some extent I must have a low EQ.

I have mused about this article for number of years, now. At this point, it seems to me that the best way to approach having more EQ is to simply learn how to have empathetic conversations with people, both people you know and even relative strangers and acquaintances. Having empathetic conversations basically is simple. Just listen to the other person’s words and intent (critically, intently, what he or she is trying to say), and then DON’T try to get your two cents worth in, but actually respond to your empathetic partner in ways which are about what he/she said, and that’s really about it: listen critically and respond kindly and unselfishly. Every time I publish this article I kick myself for not realizing how important this is.

But having a lot of friends or not also has a LOT to do with whether you are psychologically introverted or extroverted. That was basically explained to me in this way: when you are introverted you actually gain “chi” or psychic energy by being with just one other person or a small group. Extroverts get their “chi” from being in crowds. So even if you have good skills at emotionally relating to people, you might just be an introvert and not like to be in crowds or have a whole lot of friends. I am myself probably an introvert but also may have somewhat low EQ. As a functionionally low-EQ person, I am much more introverted than I have any tendency to hi-EQ, or liking crowds. Does all that make sense?

We all have a good idea what IQ is — all that intellectual, words, math and logic stuff — and we all tend to think success is all about smarts, about having a high IQ. But research shows that success in life isn’t mainly about IQ! People who have this “other” kind of smarts, EQ, or emotional intelligence, tend to be truly successful in life, and raw IQ doesn’t really matter quite as much (although of course both are important). It is interesting to speculate on the strong connection between emotional intelligence, intuition and ability at empathy. Thus, I know I personally am not a very empathetic person (although I now am trying quite hard) and have a low EQ.

A couple of weeks ago, I read that scientists have found a region in the center of the forebrain which just never gets much turned on in people who have low EQ, or high functioning autism. But, if EQ can be learned, as it can, perhaps learning to have empathetic conversations and listen in conversations critically and then respond according to the other person’s need actually might open up this blind “third eye.” And there are many books available on how to do this.

Since overall I felt I am lacking in emotional EQ social skills, I had the thought that I’d research emotional intelligence, since supposedly you can learn it. This I meant to be help both for myself and others with the same problem. If you have any friends with low EQ, please share this article with them.

I don’t think that having a naturally high EQ comes from being “right minded,” from being right brained and yin. It has a lot more to do with empathy, with being empathetic. Now, you may have to work for it more if you’re not naturally high in EQ, but empathy can be learned. Scientists have just recently found that there is a small area in the fore-brain which is the seat of empathy, and which, for example, does not function well in people who are autistic. Wouldn’t this mean that if you do not relate to people well in conversations, listening and responding, that this area of the brain never really wakes up? You CAN be empathetic, it just takes work and practice. Therefore I would think that high functioning autism, Asperger’s syndrome, does have a potential relief for it in simply learning how to be emotionally intelligent, perhaps by studying videos on emotional intelligence or ordering one or more of the books we offer links to, below. And isn’t one of the really core skills learning how to listen (truly listen) and respond (caringly) in conversations? It takes practice but anyone can do better at this.

A good article about emotional intelligence which was brought to my attention is IF YOU’RE EMOTIONALLY INTELLIGENT, BEWARE OF THESE DOWNSIDES, Cornerstone University, October 10, 2017, by Janae Ernst, which says:

Emotional intelligence is a fantastic gift. It makes you sensitive to the feelings of others, gives you the ability to harness emotions and allows you to use your own emotions for good.

We’ve all interacted with someone who has a low emotional intelligence. It’s really frustrating, right? When you tell them you’re struggling with a problem or feeling down, they look at you as if you’ve just told them you are part android. They don’t get it.

Or when they see you stay calm in the midst of a chaotic situation, they think you’re some sort of superhuman because you don’t get angry or fall into a fetal position inducing panic. In reality, you just have a relatively high emotional intelligence.

Life is hard and often unforgiving. We are all scarred by this life, all of us, life can be pretty difficult sometimes, and time leaves its marks on all of us. So how DO we have or acquire a higher EQ, and be more empathetic? Isn’t the simplest way to be empathetic and caring to our neighbor, to in a fairly rigorous way to NOT JUDGE each other and to really, actually be caring? As a Christian I see being empathetic as some kind of an approach to “loving your neighbor as yourself,” and to really, actually caring about the other people in our life, even if it costs? Seems more simple than I used to think. I think for us to learn those two techniques and have those two obligations is why Jesus died for us. I think it is important to God that we live that way.

So, again, recently it has been shown in a scientific study that people who lack empathy (i.e. emotional intelligence) have a lack of function in a small area of the forebrain. But, since EQ can be learned, maybe there are ways of “switching this part of the brain on.” I believe so, myself, but partly it’s a question also of growing more sensitive to one’s immediate environment, right? That and truly listening without thinking of your response and then giving an honest, kind and open response. So you can’t be hiding anything you must make responses openly and from the heart. As the Zen master said, “attention, attention, attention!” You have to CARE about the person you’re talking to, and lacking that, you really have to pay attention, that is, pay attention to the person you’re talking to AND your immediate environment. To do this actively takes a certain raw IQ intelligence. To do it naturally is a question of this EQ. But you can train yourself to be more sensitive. This may be what they mean when they talk about developing or opening your “third eye.”

So what is this “EQ,” anyway. Jay White gives us a good summary:

The term “emotional intelligence” first received widespread attention in a 1995 best-selling book by psychologist Daniel Goldman titled Emotional Intelligence: Why It Can Matter More Than IQ. Emotional intelligence refers to the ability to recognize, understand and manage your emotions and the emotions of others.

Researchers have coined the term “EQ” (or EI, link points to Wikipedia article) to describe an individual’s level of emotional intelligence. People with high levels of EQ are those who enjoy more self-esteem, have more compassion and empathy for others, maintain closer relationships and adapt more easily to life’s ups and downs.

One helpful article in uderstanding changes to make to increase your emotional intelligence is 5 Simple Hacks to Sharpen Your Emotional Intelligence,, no date, by Larry Kim: “Emotional intelligence is a key indicator for success in business, relationships and life in general. Try these painless ways to build yours.”

These four competencies are recognized as key components of a high EQ level:

  1. Self-awareness, meaning that you know yourself and understand your emotions. This includes being able to assess your strengths and weaknesses accurately. It also includes having a healthy amount of self-confidence.
  2. Self-management, meaning you have control of your emotions, act rationally and react to change in a positive manner. This also includes being trustworthy, conscientious, committed and optimistic.
  3. Social awareness, meaning you have an understanding of the emotions of others and know how to effectively react to these emotions. This includes having empathy and compassion for others, recognizing their unique talents and qualities, and having excellent communication skills. It also includes being comfortable in many types of social situations.
  4. Relationship management, which is the ability to maintain all types of relationships, to avoid unnecessary conflict, and to work through conflict successfully when it does arise. This includes building a sphere of influence and taking leadership when needed.

Comment by Paul Evans: While the way we are raised and educated has a lot to do with a person’s EQ, as does a certain innate, inherited ability at it, one can see from these four components that, unlike IQ, EQ is something that can be learned. Ever wonder why people read self help books?

Emotional Intelligence (Intuition)
Music & Modern Computers

Also, I have found something wonderful about the most modern computer operating systems, both Windows 10 and Linux. In every previous edition of Windows, it was the LOGIC of the operating system which had to be mastered. Deviations from using the correct logic when using the Windows operating system to some extent resulted in “damage” to or errors on the OS. But Windows 10, while involving fairly complex logic, is thoroughly intuitive, and in using it one’s EQ or intuition is actually empowered and increased by using Windows 10 (or most Linux distributions). Microsoft finally hit upon an intuitively almost obvious interface or GUI (graphic user interface). How very wonderful.

I also strongly believe that listening to a lot of good music raises one’s emotional intelligence, and a LOT. I feel this is very important. Not only does music in general affect us strongly emotionally, but the KIND of music we listen to is important. If you listen mainly to acid death metal all the time, you’ll probably have an angry or mean-spirited outlook. “The medium is the message,” as Marshall McLuhan said way back when in the 60’s. That’s why I feel it is somewhat wrong, for example, to be constantly immersed in violent video games, beyond a certain amount.

Emotional Intelligence Resources
(Kindle ebooks and more)

Kindle book at Emotional Intelligence: 10th Anniversary Edition 2012, by Daniel Goleman.

Kindle book at Emotional Intelligence 2.0, 2008, by Travis Bradberry.

Amazon paperback The Language of Emotional Intelligence: The Five Essential Tools for Building Powerful and Effective Relationships, 2008, by Jeanne Segal.

See What is Emotional Intelligence? — Goleman’s Five Concepts in Relation to Men, Women, and Their IQ, Suite, March 5, 2010, by Daya Bihm.

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