Consider this scenario: Samantha is struggling with a tough math assignment. Instead of getting frustrated and giving up, she took a deep breath and told her mom how she was feeling.  Or this one: Samantha’s friend gets some upsetting news and cancels their plans to hang out. Samantha understands why her friend doesn’t feel like socializing and makes other plans.

These responses might not seem like a big deal. But they’re signs of an important set of skills that make up what’s known as “emotional intelligence” (EI). IQ tests don’t measure this type of intelligence. Yet it’s crucial to helping us work through challenges and respond to situations successfully. It also helps us make positive connections with the people around us.

What is emotional intelligence (Otherwise known as Emotional Quotient – EQ)?

EQ refers to the ability to recognize, understand, manage, and reason with emotions in positive ways —both our own emotions and those of others around us to relieve stress, communicate effectively, empathize with others, overcome challenges and defuse conflict

The concept of EQ has existed for decades. It gained popularity with the 1995 book “Emotional Intelligence: Why It Can Matter More Than IQ” by  Daniel Goleman. Goleman described EQ as consisting of five basic components.

  1. Self-awareness: being able to identify and name one’s feelings and understand how they impact behavior.
  2. Self-regulation is the capacity to restrain impulses and respond to emotions appropriately rather than letting them rule one’s actions.
  3. Motivation: focusing on goals and regulating emotions to drive positive behavior even when facing setbacks.
  4. Empathy is recognizing emotions in others and being able to see from their perspective.
  5. Social skills include managing relationships, inspiring others, and getting along well with diverse people.

Why EQ Matters for Raising Successful Children

Emotional intelligence is the foundation for children to develop resilience, strong relationships, and lifelong well-being. Numerous studies highlight that kids with higher EI tend to have stronger academic achievement, make more responsible choices, exhibit confidence, and adapt better to challenges. EQ allows children to:

  • Manage anxiety, anger, and other difficult emotions through self-regulation techniques
  • Empathize with others’ perspectives, preventing conflicts and misunderstandings
  • Maintain motivation, grit, and perseverance toward their goals despite obstacles
  • Effectively communicate their needs and resolve interpersonal issues

In our fast-paced world, emotional skills are just as vital as academic preparation for raising well-rounded, successful adults.

The Challenges in Developing EQ

While all children can benefit tremendously from developing emotional intelligence skills, it can be challenging for those children with certain neurological conditions or learning difficulties such as:

  1. ADHD: may struggle with impulsiveness, self-regulation, and social skills
  2. Autism: may have difficulties with social awareness, empathy and communication
  3. Dyslexia/Processing Disorders: Could miss subtle emotional cues and nonverbal signals

However, emotional intelligence is very malleable, especially when nurtured from a young age through consistent practice and guidance from parents and educators.

Nurturing EQ at Home

As parents and primary role models, you have an immense opportunity to develop your child’s emotional intelligence from an early age. 

  1. Talk about emotions regularly, helping kids label their feelings
  2. Model healthy expressions of emotions and conflict resolution
  3. Read books/watch shows that explore emotional experiences
  4. Praise efforts and progress in managing emotions, not just results
  5. Practice stress-management techniques like deep breathing together
  6. Encourage empathy by doing community service activities
  7. Role-play social situations to practice communication and problem-solving

 Key Takeaways:

  • EQ is a key predictor of lifelong happiness and success
  • It comprises skills like self-awareness, self-control, motivation, empathy and social skills
  • Parents play a pivotal role in nurturing EQ from an early age
  • With the right support, all children can develop strong emotional intelligence

By investing time in your child’s EQ, you equip them with tools to thrive and reach their full potential.

Further reading on EQ

  1. Emotion malleability
  2. Beliefs about emotion’s malleability
  3. Build emotional intelligence in your child
  4. Considerations About How Emotional Intelligence Can Be Enhanced in Children With Autism Spectrum Disorder


This email is sent to you from Shruti Shah, a certified life coach with expertise in coaching kids, teens, youth, and adults. She is the founder of All Round Performance Coaching, and her mission is to connect her clients to more by empowering them to discover their passions and accomplish their goals, both personally and professionally.

This email is purely for information purposes and should not be used to diagnose any mental health conditions. 

If you’re interested in learning more about how she can help you rewire your brain and improve your overall well-being, please don’t hesitate to reach out to her at:

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