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This week, Life Training Online is reviewing Emotional Intelligence: Why It Can Matter More Than IQ, by Daniel Goleman, the eleventh of fifty-two books in the 52 Personal Development Books in 52 Weeks series.

In the remaining chapters of Emotional Intelligence, Goleman covers such topics as the important role that our families play in shaping our emotional aptitude. Physical and verbal abuse, for example, can cause major problems down the line in one’s ability to develop emotional intelligence. He also covers in depth, the effects and causes of PTSD (post traumatic stress disorder), referencing examples of veterans of war.

But by far, one of my favorite chapters was “Mind and Medicine.” Goleman focuses this chapter on the impact that our emotions have on our general health. Take this excerpt for example,

People who experienced chronic anxiety, long periods of sadness and pessimism, unremitting tension or incessant hostility, relentless cynicism or suspiciousness, were found to have double the risk of disease — including asthma, arthritis, headaches, peptic ulcers, and heart disease (each representative of major, broad categories of disease). This order of magnitude makes distressing emotions as toxic a risk factor as, say, smoking or high cholesterol are for heart disease — in other words, a major threat to health.

I find it very satisfying that science has now confirmed the link between emotions like anxiety and depression and a wide range of physical illnesses, confirming what I’ve always “instinctively known” to be true.

Schooling the Emotions“, the final chapter of the book, touches on the importance of including emotional-intelligence training classes, such as conflict resolution, in our kids’ school curriculum. Goleman makes an interesting case, sharing with the reader some schools that are currently including such classes and the success that they’re having.

Emotional Intelligence is the eleventh of fifty-two books in Life Training – Online’s series 52 Personal Development Books in 52 Weeks.


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