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Essay
Daniel Goleman’s: Emotional Intelligence
Sanam Jassal
Trent University
Our society and each individual who resides on this earth each possess a certain skill set
whether they realize it or not; subconsciously or consciously, which revolves around emotional
intelligence. In other words, emotional intelligence is defined as one’s ability to identify,
comprehend, and control one’s self-emotions whilst also being able to recognize and analyze
the feelings of others around them. Daniel Goleman, the author of Emotional Intelligence: Why it
can Matter more than IQ displays and depicts his five key aspects of emotional intelligence
which include Self-Awareness, Self- Regulation, Motivation, Empathy, Social skill, I believe
Self-awareness includes how well you are aware of your own actions and emotions and are
able to come to ultimatums with one’s self in order to thrive to one’s full potential. Self-regulation
means to have control over your actions both psychologically and behaviorally, to act the way
one should act morally. Additionally, to me motivation is an emotional skill required by setting
goals and being able to succeed in one’s highest potential which will lead to happiness.
Empathy is how well one can feel and realize how someone around them might be feeling,
putting yourself in another person’s perspective to understand the situation. Lastly, social skills
are how one acts in a collective/group manner which is an important skill to master and takes
time to learn.
Daniel Goleman, a graduate from Harvard University, which is known globally as one of the
prestigious universities: is the founder of the five components of emotional intelligence. During
his time at Amherst College, Goleman wrote his final honours paper on mental health in
historical, anthropological and social perspectives making it clear he always was fond of societal
and human actions. From there he pursued his journey at Harvard University in which he
studied clinical psychology. He was always affectionate of the human brain and how it functions
which gave him the reasons to write his first book about how to keep the mind at peace through
meditation which was titled: The Meditative Mind. Additionally, Goleman believed IQ was not the
only way to assess how intelligent a person was which is why he came up with his theory and
book Emotional Intelligence. His book was on the New York Times’ bestseller list for a little over
a year with more than 5 Million copies that got printed which was global in 40 languages.
Self-awareness
Example 1: After many times of making the same mistake over and over again I am very aware
that my mother and grandmother widely dislike when I come home later then 1:00 am. I have
been shouted at and punished each time I make this mistake and I am now conscious of the
consequences that come with not abiding by their house rules. If I come home past 1 am I won’t
be able to take the car if I need to go someplace, and if I need money I wouldn’t receive any as
they believe in values for my actions. I am definitely more self-aware about the house rules and
the time, setting a set plan for my night and leaving from wherever I am at a corresponding time
to make it home before my parents can get furious.
Example 2: My worst fear out of anything in the world is heights. I am so aware I am scared of
heights that when I get forced to go to Canadas Wonderland with my family I don’t go on the
roller coasters that are outrageously high like Behemoth or Leviathan. However, I attempt to
attend the smaller rides which I am able to go through without facing my fear. Additionally, I am
very self-aware of what I am afraid of and will do anything not to face my fears.
Self-regulation
Example 1: Self-regulation: I used to work as a sales associate at Shoe Club, where I was the
head sales associate and my daily responsibilities including approaching customers and dealing
with any customers concerns, questions and anything else they needed help with. At least one
time per shift an angry customer walks into the store with a problem their shoe has after they
bought it and used it for 2-3 months. My primary goal in dealing with angry customers was to
stay calm, cool, and collective because most of these issues’ customers were bringing up were
out of my control. If a customer came 2 weeks after his purchase and had the receipt, I would
be able to exchange it without an issue. But some customers would come month after and it is
clear that due to heavy wear and tears the shoe broke. There were many times I wanted to just
snap and explode with comments of stupidity but that would make me look bad which is why I
needed to be calm. Acting calm and unfazed took me a long way as I later got promoted to
assistant manager, and began opening and closing the store, and taking on more
responsibilities.
Example 2: My daily routine for 3 years straight involved me smoking a pack of cigarettes a
day. I loved smoking cigarettes and didn’t realize what the negatives of smoking was doing to
my body. I thought in my head I would never quit. I randomly woke up one morning and thought
to myself, I’m always waking up with mucus in my lungs that I have to spit out, my lips were
turning purple and no one around me admired the smell. I knew I had to cut down no matter
how hard and how long it takes. I stopped cold turkey at first, which means I stopped smoking
cigarettes. This method did not work as much as I would have liked it to, and went back to
smoking, but this time it was only 2 – 3 a day. My body was feeling weird and different as it was
so used to smoking a pack a day. From there I smoked 1 occasionally and from thereafter I
stopped completely and switched to vaping. After vaping, for the prime reason just to blow out
some type of smoke I stopped that too. I realized if I wanted to stop something and have the
utmost desire anything is possible if you just believe.
Motivation.
Example 1: One key example where I had an issue being motivated and thriving to reach my
highest potential is when I worked at Polo Ralph Lauren. I got hired as a seasonal associate
and knew I was not going to be able to work there when my contract was over as It correlated
with my school schedule. Knowing this, I did not become motivated to work as hard as I should
have, and this made my energy level pathetic. I did not have the desire to push myself and
others around me to meet simple sales goals and ended up working with little to no enthusiasm.
Example 2: I had very little motivation to go to school after high school. I took 2 years off after I
graduated high school, so I could work as I was living in a household with only my mother whom
needed help to cover expenses for us. After working hard, I felt I had no purpose to go to school
which is the reason I did not give it much thought. After finishing my second year of work I
realised this is not where I want to be financially and emotionally. I came up with a plan and a
goal as to what I wanted to become and what program options I could take post-secondary.
After carefully determining what my prime options where I decided to take Business
Administration at Trent University where I am specializing in accounting. Through motivation
from my mother and myself I planned out my 4 years, choosing each course for each semester
and always knowing what my final goal is when I graduate. My purpose is to provide for my
mother and the best way to do so is something that I love and where I can support her earning a
good living. I am committed to completing my school here at Trent and can’t wait to put my
hands out there on the outside world at work.
Empathy
Example 1: Many times, in high school I have seen many people being bullied for reasons
beyond their control or simply for no reason. In middle school I have been a victim of bullying
which is why when I see it I can’t stand there silently. I know how it feels being picked on and
knowing there is nothing that can be done. The group of people I used to call my friends would
love making fun of people and bullying them which I felt was unfair and unmoral. Often, I was
the person out of everyone to stand up for the victim and talk my friend out of the nonsense
situation. I told my buddy you can’t treat people like that and one day karma will come back and
hit you. You should treat other people exactly the way you would like to be treated otherwise if
you ever are treated bad, it’s because that’s how you deserve to be treated. This surprisingly
worked as he was one of the biggest bullies but stopped doing it in front of me.
Example 2: When I was about 12 years old I can still remember the day my best friend’s father
passed away. I did not know how to cope with what was happening as I had never been in a
situation like that. I was young and did not know how to show support to my friend. I was not
there for him as I should have been, I could not put myself in his shoes and try to understand
how he was feeling. For some reason I just simply did not care because I was at such a young
age. If I could turn back time I would be there for him each and every day I could, being the best
friend, I should have been. Showing empathy to him would have extended our friendship and
we would still be friends today.
Social skills
Example 1: In high school, my tendencies of being socially active was very low during school
work. Throughout group projects I was always the shy person who rarely spoke which made it
seem like I didn’t want to be a part of the group. By having bad social tendencies as I was never
good at school work, I was unable to get my ideas through to my group members. I personally
did not like doing work at school which made me alienate myself from the classroom. Also,
whenever we had to present in front of the class I would get very nervous and was unable to
illiterate words correctly, and sometimes gave up on trying to become a better speaker. This is a
skill I worked on since high school and believe at this point in my life I improved by practicing
intensely and speaking to large groups of guests.
Example 2: On the other hand, outside of the classroom I was one of the most sociable
individuals in high school, being friends with everyone in each grade. I knew mostly everyone
and always spoke to them before/after classes, at lunch time and even between classes. I
would walk around greeting people and telling them stories which made everyone laugh, some
would say I would even make there day. I Guess you can say I was like the class clown in a
way, always the one laughing and talking to my friends constantly. I enjoyed being humorous
and meeting new people, both men and women.
In essence, researching about emotional intelligence and reading the book taught me much
more than I thought I knew about the psychological and physical factors revolving around
emotional intelligence. I’ve always heard of his five emotional intelligence theories but did not
know the depth it has on ourselves and others around us. His theory showed me how humans
interact with one another, how they interpret and interact with there selves and also how they
can understand and feel other emotions. I have always been a fan of reading psychology books
and learning about the brain and its functions, but Daniel Goleman’s book also taught me the
details of self-awareness and self-discipline which showed me I should always be aware of
myself and my self-worth and also disciplining myself when needed in certain scenarios.
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