How to love your partner the way he/she needs to be loved

Love is a word of great meaning and responsibility. Everyone thinks they know what love your partner means, but they will face setbacks on more than one occasion in their lives. Showing the love you feel for your spouse is not as easy as you might expect because he or she may speak a completely different love language from you.

What is a love language? Imagine the following scenario: tomorrow is your spouse’s birthday. For that occasion, as you love big celebrations, you prepare a surprise party for him/her. You spend time organizing it, invite all his/her friends and try your best to make it the night of his/her life.

But what happens if your spouse does not like large gatherings? He/she is introverted and prefers to be around fewer people. Thus, it becomes evident that husband and wife are not speaking the same love language.

How can you figure out what language is being used? How many types of love languages are there? I want to go more in depth with you into this matter and much more.

How to love your partner?

In order to love your partner the way he/she needs to be loved, we must first understand what love is.

Love is a powerful feeling of affection, which is shown in different ways. There are millions of points of views regarding love and getting them all to converge is complicated.

Love can be expressed in so many ways that some of them could cause disappointment — disappointment from not receiving the answer you expect from your partner.

When a man and a woman are satisfied with the love they feel and the way they communicate, that’s great news. In fact, it is God’s plan for us, to be on the same page in our marriages, that we are happy with each other. However, this is not the reality for all marriages.

If you do not feel satisfied with the way your spouse offers you his/her love, I recommend that you start an appropriate talk with him/her about this matter. Both of you must understand the importance of synchronizing the ways in which you feel loved. How does your partner feel most loved? You will know find out by discovering the love languages.

Love languages

One of the most essential lessons you must learn to love your partner the way he/she wants to be loved is determining which love language he/she uses. You may not have heard of them, but they are preferences that every person has when it comes to receiving and showing love. Not only does it apply in a loving relationship, but it also applies in other types of relationships, such as family relationships or friendships.

According to writer Gary Chapman, there are five love languages that are essential for relationships to improve and succeed. The main idea is to determine which types of languages are preferred and use this to your advantage. They are:

1.    Words

There are people who are able to express their love through words. Expressing your affection through words of love, congratulations, words of support, or kindness has a great positive effect on the other person. The words that were just a simple compliment for you are, perhaps, for your wife, the recognition she expects.

In order to express yourself through this language, you can use direct and meaningful words. For example: “I love you so much” or “You are special to me.” Do not use words that you do not really feel, they have to come from the bottom of your heart, be credible, and you must say them in the right context. If you do not feel comfortable talking like this, maybe this is not your favorite love language.

2.    Quality time

The world seems to be going faster than we can handle. Therefore, do not waste time and show your love to your loved ones by giving them quality time. You can share more of your day-to-day with them, just focusing on them.

The less rush and fewer distractions you have, the higher the quality of what you are doing will be. It may not seem important, but it is very important if you think about it.

3.    Gifts

I do not mean that love can be measured by the price of a material gift, but that certain gifts can show dedication and love.

For example, if your wife has been exhausted lately due to her routine, giving her a spa day so she can relax would be an option. Or, if your husband constantly complains about his desk always being unstable, giving him a new one would be an excellent gift. In both cases, the spouses are thinking about their other partner’s well-being, about what he/she needs. Thus, it is considered one of the love languages.

4.    Acts of service

Doing acts of service like cleaning, cooking, and fixing things is one of the many love languages. These acts of service are not done with the hope of receiving something in exchange, they are not mandatory. However, doing them will make the one you love smile.

The food your mother prepared for you, or your father repairing your old bicycle over and over again, were both ways in which they were expressing their love to you.

5.    Physical contact

Finally, the simplest and most direct form of communication is physical contact. From touching, caressing, or kissing, it is normal for couples to show their love this way. Even so, showing physical affection such as pats on the shoulder or hugs are also a good way to show your love to your children, family members or friends.

How do I identify what my partner likes?

In order to find out how to love your partner and what he/she prefers, first you need to understand what love language you speak. How do you prefer to receive love? How do you tend to express it? Think about how you react to different love languages because you will need to tell the one you love.

Invite your partner to open up to you and to be honest about the gestures of love that he/she likes the most. To really love is to care about your partner’s feelings as much as you care about your own. Only in that way cab we understand its power. Love is definitely a language we can all speak.

Do you want to know more about this subject? You can do so by calling 407 618 0212.

How to teach our children emotional intelligence

As a parent, you will not be able to encourage emotional intelligence in your children without first understanding it in detail, and your role as a guide. That is why I want us to go deeper into what makes up emotional intelligence. Besides, we should also know what kind of behavior is appropriate for this task.

What are the components of emotional intelligence?

Talking about emotional intelligence without looking into the work of Daniel Goleman would be a mistake, thus it is necessary to understand his work. According to Goleman, emotional intelligence can be understood as a type that goes beyond the rational or logical.

It is composed of five principles that work together to help us resolve conflicts. These components or principles are:

Emotional Self-Awareness

Emotional self-awareness refers to the ability to understand one’s own emotions and moods. It consists of an intellectual process in which we can relate what we feel to what we express and what others experience.

It is through it that we can analyze how our actions affect others and understand that the emotions you feel can change the world around you.

Emotional Self-Regulation

Emotional self-regulation is the ability to control impulses and emotions with assertiveness. Self-regulation is what prevents us getting carried away by our primary instincts, controlling them instead. A person lacking emotional self-regulation will tend to cause conflicts and altercations in their environment because they do not know how to control themselves.

Lack of control over emotions is dangerous because it will create a bad self-image. On the other hand, those who do have this kind of self-regulation are able to adapt to their environment and do not let emotions overflow. Thinking before speaking is a good way to summarize emotional self-regulation.


The third component of emotional intelligence is motivation, which is a psychological process composed of our ability to direct our emotional states towards a specific goal. This has to be in a positive and energetic way, as it will help to face setbacks with vigor.

Motivation helps us stay on track in our lives, to be persistent, and avoid distractions. When there is no motivation, you will notice that fatigue and boredom will set in. So will sadness and negativity.


Empathy is a very valuable quality in the world we live in. I think this because of how blind we can sometimes be to the feelings of others, and how distant we feel from our neighbor, when it should be the opposite.

Empathy contributes to emotional intelligence as the ability to put ourselves in the place of others, allowing us to interpret others’ feelings and live their emotions.

Using it, we can be more open-minded and we can also be of more help in complicated moments when we do not know how to act.

Social Skills

The last of the elements are social skills, which are a series of abilities that allow us to relate better to the surrounding individuals. They are recognized as being key to professional and personal development.

Without social skills, we would not be able to communicate effectively, nor know the needs of our environment. That is what we are made for, to live in community and togetherness, just as God teaches us through His word. The problem is that those who lack highly developed social skills feel nervous when interacting with others, for example.

Here, we come back to the issue of the importance for children. They are constantly being pushed to socialize in their schools from a very young age. And a child who finds it difficult to work in a team will have a more difficult time adapting in the educational system.

The first school to teach emotional intelligence is at home

Do you want your children to have high emotional intelligence? My main advice is that everything starts at home. It is not the first time I have said it, but this is the reality that I need to emphasize again and again. Children are the reflection of their parents. Therefore, it is necessary for them to see how emotional intelligence works at home.

God has placed the greatest task of creation in the hands of mothers and fathers, that of conceiving life, and guiding it along the right path. To give immeasurable love, as He Himself gives us in his infinite mercy as our creator.

So have you evaluated whether you are a good example of emotional intelligence for your children? If the answer is negative after analyzing yourself, you must understand that parents who are not emotionally intelligent will not be able to teach their children to practice it. You can’t give what you don’t have, it’s as simple as that.

You must also internalize that the emotional dynamic that parents experience is the same that their children experience. Children will handle their emotions the same way their parents do. You are the mirror in which your child will reflect, so it is a team effort. It is work that not only depends on the little ones, but also on the adults in the house.

What kind of parent are you?

The relationship between parents and children is a beautiful bond. It must be strengthened and enriched day by day. However, we agree that it will not be easy to keep it stable all the time due to its complexity. It is true especially during the development stage, a fundamental stage to solidify this sacred bond. The path of emotional growth is full of responsibility and requires constant self-education.

One of the ways to do this is to identify the type of parent you are. For this task, the American psychologist and clinician John Gottman has classified parents according to several types:

  • Careless parents. They are the type of parents who belittle and ridicule their children’s negative emotions.
  • Punishing parents. They are the ones who impose punishments and reprimand their children. They abound in negative feelings.
  • Parents who do not set limits. These parents are in a middle. Although they accept the child’s negative emotions, they are not able to set limits on their behaviors.
  • “Emotional Coach” Parents. This is the ideal. These parents identify their children’s feelings and encourage them to talk about it and try to find a solution together.

You yourself have the power to be your child’s emotional coach. But for that, you must have skills such as:

  • knowing how to identify the child’s emotions,
  • taking advantage of opportunities to teach them,
  • listening to them with empathy and
  • validating their feelings.

It is also necessary teaching them to define them. As well as establishing limits to negative feelings and giving them accessible solutions.

Learning to Love -Key for happiness

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text] I thought I knew how to love, and I won’t have to worry about learning to love. I was married to my beautiful wife, Zoraida. And was ready to make her happy for the rest of her life. So, I was confident that being raised in an Adventist home was more than enough to make me a good husband.

However, when the honeymoon ended, I began to see all my wife’s imperfections and suddenly began to mistreat her in ways I thought I never would. The good behaviors I wanted to practice with my wife, I did not do, and the bad behaviors I never thought I would show, I did. I had the same problem that Paul describes in Romans 7:19, “For I do not do the good I want to do, but the evil I do not want to do—this I keep on doing.”

Be able of learning to love

What was the problem? The answer we usually have for this issue is that we are sinners and that we have a sinful nature. This is correct, but it is not an excuse I could use to justify my negative behavior. Another answer is that we do not know how to love. But how could I say that I did not know how to love if I had been in love for almost my entire life?

It is a different thing to say that you are in love than to say that you know how to love. I am talking about Agape love, the divine love that is sacrificial and unconditional. The love, described in the Bible in 1 Corinthians 13, is not governed by emotion but by a principle.

Why the need of learning to love

So, why didn’t I know how to love? I did not know how to love because the way I showed love was connected to my lack of emotional growth. My biological growth was not proportional to my emotional growth. In other words, I could have been 50 years old, but I was still behaving like an infant emotionally.

Neuroscience generally divides the mind into two dimensions: the conscious mind and the subconscious mind. The conscious mind is the one in charge of our short-term memory — everything we have in the present. The subconscious mind is the one in control of our involuntary actions, automatic thoughts, emotions, dreams, intuition, and impulses.

The important thing about these concepts is that, according to the psychological literature, the subconscious mind is the one that directs our life. 90 percent of all the decisions we make every day come from our subconscious minds.

A life script

Our subconscious mind performs certain actions before we can think about them consciously, thereby impacting our free will. These “little voices” are nothing but mere thoughts that emerge automatically in our minds. They are part of an internal life script that tells us where to go and what to do. This script determines the way we interpret the world and our basic way of being.

Unconsciously, we have been developing a life script since our childhood. We were influenced by our attachment figures, especially our parents or the people closest to us, and now we are almost obliged to represent these individuals in our life. This explains why I was behaving in ways that were hurting my wife’s feelings. My life was guided by the life script I had received from my parents.

What a life script is?

A life script is the mental programming that affects our lives. It gives us the language we want to use and the actions we are going to develop. It is not easy to be aware of the life script that we follow, but seeking to answer complicated questions about our existence makes the difference between conforming to the flow of “what there is” and truly following the path of a healthy heart.

Today, we all live life scripts influenced by someone from our past. That is the number one reason why we need to learn how to love. We are reliving the same emotional dynamic we had in our families, and if our parents were not teaching us how to love, we are probably going to find it difficult to show love for others.

Everyone lives love in a limited way until they learn how to transform their lives, and the fact that someone does not love may be due to a lack of knowledge about love. If we want to learn about cars, we will undoubtedly do it through a diligent study of cars. If we want to be chefs, surely, we will learn the culinary arts, and maybe even try to take some cooking classes.

How do we learn to love?

Nevertheless, it seems less obvious to us that if we want to give and receive love, we should devote at least some time, like the mechanic or the chef, to studying and learning to love. No mechanic or cook would ever believe that the mere fact of just wanting to obtain knowledge in these fields would make them experts. The same goes for love. It is necessary to learn how to love and be loved. How are we learning to love?

1. we need to practice self-awareness

We cannot change what we do not know. We need to find, with the help of the Holy Spirit, the imperfections we have in our lives that keep us away from God and others. In my case, if I wanted to learn how to love Zoraida, I needed to make myself aware that I was not managing my anger correctly.

I needed to understand the memories or experiences that I had in my subconscious mind that was preventing me from expressing my anger in a godly way. The first two chapters of the book “Learning to Love” present this issue and provide practical exercises to help readers make sense of their past and change their present behavior.

2. We need to increase our emotional intelligence

How do we grow in this area? By reflecting on our emotions and labeling them. Practice empathizing with yourself and others. Know your stressors. Be resilient. Practice responding rather than reacting. Increasing our emotional intelligence is a lifetime process, so do not give up.

3.  We need to renew our minds

The transformation of our minds is the work of the Holy Spirit. In the end, the most important task we have is to learn how to love God and others. The Apostle Paul said:

“Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing, and perfect will” (Romans 12:2).

We want to challenge our families and communities to learn how to love and be loved. We will conduct seminars in churches, schools, and many other institutions. And we also provide resources for every person who wants to learn how to love. Be part of this movement, #learningtolove. Visit our section where we provide more information about Learning to Love.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]

Emotional Intelligence Is Not Something Natural

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His name said, Amable (Kind, in Spanish), but he did not honor it because he has lack of emotional intelligence. Who would imagine that this young enthusiast for life, happy and vibrant, and such a good person that he once was, would become a hermit?

He went from being a good friend, neighbor, and member of his family, to being a bitter, hermit. He had been through difficult times in his life, but he had also received many blessings and could not see them, for his isolation had only brought with it severe emotional blindness.

Amable had isolated himself from all that he once loved, his closure in himself had caused the feelings and emotions of others to become irrelevant. Due to his rough and unconsidered treatment of others, people who appreciated him and his loved ones were gradually moving away from him.

Lack of emotional intelligence

One of the problems that Amable had was a lack of emotional intelligence. It can define as the ability of a person to manage, understand, select, and work on their emotions, and the emotions of others.

The problem with emotional intelligence is that it is something that is not innate in us. We are not born emotionally intelligent. Why? Because we are all born into a world contaminated by sin. And the product of the sinful state we carry inside of us and the sinful actions of the people around us.

We have been exposed to traumatic, very negative experiences that have led us to experience emotions that we have not been able to handle. However, our chronological growth is not determinedly connected to our emotional growth. I can be an adult chronologically but a child emotionally.

Emotional children

For example, emotional children interpret disagreements as personal offenses. They feel easily injured, they complain, they retract, they manipulate, they seek revenge. Besides, they are sarcastic when they do not get what they want. And they have great difficulty talking calmly about their needs and the things they want in a kind and mature way.

Emotional adolescents

Emotional adolescents tend to always be on the defensive. They are threatened and alarmed by criticism, they treat conflicts badly, they usually blame, appease, go with a third person, frown, or ignore the issue altogether.

Emotional adults

Emotional adults are deeply attuned to their emotional world. They can enter into the feelings, needs, and concerns of others without losing themselves. They can ask for what they need, want, or prefer, in a clear, direct, and honest way. Not only that, but they recognize, control, and take responsibility for their thoughts and feelings.

Likewise, they can, even under pressure, affirm their personal beliefs and values ​​without being aggressive. They respect others without having to change them. Amable, the man in the story. It was an emotional child.

How do you get emotional intelligence?

So, the question you should be asking yourself is this: how do you grow emotionally? Our spiritual growth must connect to our emotional growth. The Bible says that “our body is the temple of the Holy Spirit” 1 Cor. 6: 19-20; that “we have the mind of Christ” 1 Cor. 2:16.

The Holy Spirit is the one who produces in us spiritual and emotional growth. As Ephesians 4:13 says: Until he is a man of full maturity, to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ. The word maturity means complete, whole, perfect, well-developed, and adult.

Read the book Learning to Love and learn how to grow emotionally.

Self-Awareness -An Ingredient in Your Spiritual Journey

Self awareness


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Let’s see a case where Self-Awareness is key. Nasrudin — the protagonist of many Middle Eastern, Greek, and Russian folktales — was approaching the door of his house one night when he suddenly realized he had lost his key. He tried to look around for it, but the night was so dark he could hardly see the ground. So he got down on his hands and knees and examined the ground where he was standing. Nevertheless, it was still too dark to see anything.

Moving back toward a streetlamp, he again got down and began a meticulous examination of the area. A friend came by and, noticing him, asked what he was doing. Nasrudin replied, “I lost my key, and I am looking for it.” So the friend too got down on his hands and knees and began to search. After a while, the friend asked, “Do you remember where you might have lost the key?” “Certainly,” answered Nasrudin, “I lost it in my house.” “Then why are you looking for it out here?” “Because,” answered Nasrudin, “the light is so much better here.”

We are all considerably more like Nasrudin than we like to acknowledge. We search for a solution to the problem that we have, but we tend to look for it outside ourselves, where it seems easier to search. Nevertheless, the key is inside, in the dark. ​

Developing emotional intelligence

In this post, I would like to begin to talk about the process of developing emotional intelligence with the guidance of the Holy Spirit. You could try to gain emotional intelligence on your own with self-control. However, only your Maker can help you achieve the mind of Christ. Any other transformation in your life that you try to make separated from God is in vain because our heart (mind) is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it? Jer. 17:9

The first step in emotional intelligence is self-awareness. In my experience as a pastor and a therapist, I have noticed that sincere people have focused on knowing God and tended to ignore knowing themselves. The consequence is what brings people to call me asking for spiritual guidance and professional help. I have seen grievous marriages betrayed, families destroyed, ministries shipwrecked, and endless numbers of people damaged.

Leaving the self out of your spiritual journey is not living the reality of your life. For example, living a spiritual life while failing to know ourselves deeply may produce an external form of piety, such as one of the Pharisees, but we know that this only leaves a gap between appearance in front of our church and the reality of our life.

This incongruence in our life produces what psychologists call cognitive dissociation. That is, trying to live a life not according to the reality of your beliefs. San Agustin says, “How could you get to know God when you are so far from yourself? And he prayed, Lord, help me to know myself, so I could get to know you.”

What is self-awareness ?

It is to see ourselves clearly, aware of our thoughts, emotions, motives, and patterns. In addition, it is understanding how hurt has led us to view ourselves and others in maladaptive ways. You may be asking yourself, why do I have to focus on my inner life instead of focusing only on God and His power?

If we don’t know ourselves, we can’t know God either. We will not be able to understand others nor empathize with them. Also, we cannot change something that we are not aware of. If we don’t know ourselves, we will not be able to invite the Holy Spirit into our story to operate His transformational power.

The Holy Spirit never forces himself into our story because we have free will. Without self-awareness, we are doomed to failure because there is no deep knowing of God without a deep knowledge of the self and no deep knowing of the self without a deep knowing of God. For this reason, John Calvin wrote, “nearly the whole of sacred doctrine consists in these two parts: knowledge of God and ourselves.”

If this is your experience today, don’t allow the devil to distract you with guilt. The Holy Spirit is calling you to a deeply personal encounter with God and yourself. Open your heart and pray with me: Search me [thoroughly], Oh God, and know my heart (mind); test me and know my anxious thoughts; and see if there is any wicked or hurtful way in me, and lead me in an everlasting way. Psalm 139:23-24 (AMP). This is the beginning of your transformation.

You Cannot Change What You are not Aware of

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Let’s see an example that shows that you cannot change what you are not aware of. Joe DiMaggio was a baseball player for the New York Yankees. He was a real hero. Joe was considered one of the best baseball players of the twentieth century.

Every time he entered a public place, such as a restaurant or event, the crowd exploded into applause for his achievements and performances. Year after year, news reporters praised his extraordinary talent.

Joe married one of the most prominent women in Hollywood, Marilyn Monroe. She was a beautiful and talented woman, and this was another precious pearl in his crown. However, after Joe’s death, a controversial biography was published about the life of this baseball hero. This biography detailed how the image of this great athlete was all a facade.

Behind his mask, he was an egocentric, competitive, greedy, selfish person, guided by the power of money. The author of his biography, Ben Cramer, in his book Joe DiMaggio: Life of the hero, describes what he called the monotony of Joe’s life caused by his commitment to not show anything but his false self.

In DiMaggio’s story, the icon was well known, but the real self was buried. Many of us are still, like this great hero, buried in our false self, and what people know about us is a complete lie. For this reason, the Bible says in Proverbs 23:7 “for as he thinks in his heart, so is he” (KJV). You are who you are inside, not on the outside.

You cannot change what you are not aware of

Today, I want to continue our adventure in developing emotional intelligence. In our last post, we talked about the first step to developing emotional intelligence and self-awareness. We concluded that self-awareness must begin with a clear understanding of God’s love for you. That is, it does not matter what you see inside of you, God will never stop loving you.

After understanding this truth, you need to start uncovering the real you. Transformation occurs when you are brave enough to confront your shadows. Peter Scazzero in his book, The Emotionally Healthy Leader, says that “your shadow is the accumulation of untamed emotions, less-than-pure motives and, thoughts that, while largely unconscious, strongly influence and shape your behavior. It is the damaged but mostly hidden version of who you are.” You cannot change what you are unaware of.

A tool that I have used personally and recommend to my patients comes from Henry Cloud in his book Integrity. Cloud talks about standing on a boat and looking back at its wake as a way of seeing where he has been.

One side of this wake can be thought of as our achievements:

  • Have I done what I have set out to do?
  • Have I performed at the level I set for myself? If not, why?
  • Was there something unrealistic about my expectations?
  • Was there a change that prevented me from achieving a goal, and how do I feel about that?

The other side of the wake can be thought of as relationships:

  • As a leader, have the people I have led found themselves supported or neglected?
  • Are they enthusiastic in their roles or are they exhausted, or even damaged in some way?
  • Do I act as if I am the only one with a brain, and disregard other people’s suggestions?
  • Are there similar themes within the areas where I exercise influence?
  • Do I push people away and then feel alone?
  • Do I blame and judge others on my team for my faults?

Begin to discover what you are not aware of

I challenge you to sit down, be in silence, pray, and take time to meditate on these questions, asking the Holy Spirit to search your heart and guide you to confront your true self. Next, begin writing a journal every day.

As you find answers to your questions, and the Holy Spirit intervenes in your life, write down your experiences, and this action will have a powerful therapeutic effect on you.

If you are serious about developing self-awareness, contact a close friend, family member, or mentor (I suggest someone who knows you well), and invite this person to have a meal with you. During the meal, ask this person to share the one thing that annoys him or her the most about you.

Before that person answers you, tell him/her that nothing is off-limits and that you are not allowed to respond defensively, only to listen with an open heart and mind. This is another powerful life-altering exercise in self-awareness.

What is your opinion on this topic? Share it with us in the comments section. God bless you.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]

Emotional intelligence during the pandemic

So, the coronavirus pandemic has been a source of great stress for many people. emotional intelligence is key to keeping going. The fear and anxiety produced by this new disease is overwhelming and scary, and so is the ability this disease has to destroy families, from the poorest to the richest.

Much has been written about how to handle the crisis and how to improve our mental health. But today, more than ever, we need something more than the mere fact of practicing social distancing and using masks. We need to grow in our emotional intelligence. Being someone who behaves with high emotional intelligence has never been as important as it is in this unprecedented time.

Emotional intelligence is the ability to perceive, express, understand, and manage emotions. And, it is important, since the more we understand these aspects about ourselves, the better our spiritual and mental health, and social development will be during the pandemic.

Let me ask you today, are the decisions you make as a parent, spouse, son or daughter, employee or leader, generated by fear or despair, or by a person who has emotional intelligence? The way you answer this question will determine where you are going to be at the end of this pandemic.

Many studies by several universities from around the world have shown that a person’s success in many levels of life, such as intrapersonal, interpersonal, and, social, is determined by the level of emotional intelligence that person has. These studies reveal that 80 percent of a person’s success is determined by emotional intelligence and only 20 percent is determined by rational intelligence or his/her intelligence quotient.

What is the origin of the term emotional intelligence?

Many people attribute the concept of Emotional Intelligence to Daniel Goleman, but actually, this concept had been already elaborated on by other authors before Goleman made it popular in his book Emotional Intelligence in 1995.

It is believed that the first person to develop this line of thought about emotional intelligence was Edward L. Thorndike in 1920. Back then, he used the term social intelligence to describe the ability to understand or motivate other people.

In 1940, David WeshslerWechsler described the influence that human behavioral factors that were not determined by intellect had, and he made it clear that intelligence tests would not be complete until the factors influencing human beings that were beyond intellect and people’s relationships could be properly described.

Howard Gardner and its tribute to emotional intelligence

Unfortunately, these authors’ works went unnoticed for many years, until 1983, when Howard Gardner, in his book Multiple Intelligences: the practical theory, introduced the idea that intelligence indicators, such as intelligence quotient, do not fully explain cognitive ability, since they do not consider “interpersonal intelligence” (the ability to understand intentions, motivations, or other people’s desires), nor the “intrapersonal intelligence” (the ability to understand oneself, appreciate feelings, fears, and self-motivations).

The first use of the term emotional intelligence is generally attributed to Wayne Payne in his doctoral thesis: “A study about emotions: the development of emotional intelligence” (1985). However, this expression had already appeared before in texts written by Beldoch (1964) and Leuner (1966). Stanley Greenspan also proposed an emotional intelligence model in 1989, as well as Peter Salovey and John D. Mayer. But, of all these authors, the one who popularized the concept was Daniel Goleman in his above-mentioned book.

Now, let us leave this concept’s historical background behind. LetsLet’s talk about the importance to have high emotional intelligence in the midst of amid the pandemic.

According to Daniel Goleman, emotional intelligence entails five practical skills that must developed by someone who wants to grow in managing his/her emotions. Each of these 5 Practical Skills of Emotional Intelligence was also subdivided into different competencies. Let’s look at these abilities applied to the context of the pandemic.


This means acknowledging one’s state of mind, resources, and intuition. This skill is key while we navigate through this pandemic, since without self-awareness, we cannot understand the emotions we are experiencing amid the crisis, the resources we are counting on to face the crisis, and, we will not have the necessary intuition to t make wise decisions.

Emotional competencies that depend on self-awareness

The emotional competencies that depend on self-awareness are:

  • Emotional awareness: to identify our own emotions and the effects they may have on us and those around us. For example, the parent who does not have emotional awareness will not know how to identify the emotions his/her child is experiencing. In the end, he/she will not be able to teach his/her child how to manage emotions.
  • Self-evaluation: to know our own strengths and limitations. Every human being has strengths and limitations. Many times, we focusefocus on the limitations we have that we neglect the strengths that have led us to where we are now. In the pandemic, it is imperative to assess our strengths and limitations and focus our energy on depending on our strengths and let ourselves be influenced by others who can help us with our limitations.
  • Self-confidence: a strong feeling of self-worth and ability. The way you perceive and value yourself will allow you to navigate through troubled waters. If you do not trust yourself, no one will trust you either.

2) Self-regulation

the second skill relates to self-regulation. There may be no more essential psychological skill than the ability to resist an impulse. How many poor decisions have you made due to your lack of self-regulation? Unnecessary purchases, angry and bad moments that might have been avoided.

Besides, there are days in the midst of amid the crisis in which you get up with no motivation to do things, you want to stay in bed. But, self-regulation is what moves you to manage your state of mind and it pushes you to reach the goals you have set for that day.

The emotional competencies that depend on self-regulatio

Self-control: to stay vigilant about disturbing emotions and impulses. There are toxic emotions we have to keep an eye on. Resisting the impulse to lose control is the basis for emotional self-control, since each emotion is a desire to act in the face of the problem and that desire is not always the right response.

Trustworthiness: to keep adequate standards of honesty and integrity.

Awareness: to take responsibility for our work performance. Many blame the economy or social distancing for their family crisis. Awareness helps you take responsibility for what you have to do when facing the crisis and stop blaming others for the things you do not have in your life.

Adaptability: flexibility in managing changing situations. Everyone who has found a way to thrive during this pandemic has had to adapt themselves to changes. Adapting to Zoom meetings, to having to live with a family member that you use to seeing for only a few hours. Flexibility and adaptability are two elements that successful people have.

– Innovation: to be comfortable with new information, new ideas, and situations. While many companies have ended in bankruptcy, many others have grown in the middle of the crisis. What is the difference? The people in charge and the innovation competency. Ask yourself, how much innovation have you brought to your family in order to improve your emotional connection with your loved ones?

3) Motivation

It refers to the emotional tendencies that guide or facilitate meeting established goals.

  • Impulse of achievement: the effort to improve or reach a standard of excellency in your family.
  • Commitment: Developing a commitment to your family’s goals.
  • Initiative: the availability to react to opportunities. Opportunities cannot be wasted. Your motivation will lead you to be aware of initiatives that might change your life or your family’s.
  • Optimism: the persistence in chasing the goals despite obstacles and setbacks. This pandemic may have affected your family in several ways, but your optimism is what will allow you to rise from the ruins of despair and to continue towards the goals you have set for yourself.

4) Empathy

It is the other ability that will take you down a path to hope in the middle of the crisis. There are so many people who are in need around you right now, people who are looking for someone who can feel empathy for them. Empathy means being aware of other people’s feelings, needs, and concerns. It does not mean that the other person must think like us, but understand the way other people think and respect it. If we do the opposite, it could lead us to be self-centered.

Emotional competences that depend on empathy

Thus, the emotional competences that depend on empathy are:

  • Understanding other people: to understand the feelings and perspectives of the family members. Maybe your children are exhausted from having online classes. A smart parent understands his/her children and will take advantage of this opportunity to teach them how to manage their emotions.
  • To help others to blossom: being aware of the developmental needs of others and helping them strengthen their skills. In marriage and family therapy, we emphasize this aspect. We talk about discovering the needs the children and spouses have so we can help them grow. In the end, we all need the person we have beside us in order to survive.
  • Orientation service: to anticipate, acknowledge, and satisfy your family’s real needs.
  • Enhancing diversity: to cultivate opportunities to bring diversity to your family. Not everyone has to be like you. Accept diversity of opinions and ideas, and you will have a healthy family. 
  • Political awareness: to be able to read your family’s emotional currents and the power of the relationships they have among them.

5) Social skills

The last skill relates to the social field. It means being an expert in providing the desired answers to other family members. This goal depends on the following emotional skills:

  • Influence: to come up with effective persuasion tactics. 
  • Communication: to know how to listen openly to others and to provide convincing messages.
  • Conflict management: to know how to negotiate and solve disagreements within your marital and family relationships.
  • Leadership: the ability to inspire and guide your family members.
  • A catalyst for change: being a starter or administrator of new situations.
  • A bond builder: to nurture and strengthen interpersonal relationships among family members.
  • Collaboration and cooperation: to work with other family members in order to achieve shared goals.
  • Team abilities: to be able to create synergy in the pursuit of collective goals in your family.

How have you put emotional intelligence into practice in the midst of the pandemic? Maybe you feel disappointed with yourself because you have not managed your emotions well. But remember, it is never too late to start.

Start today by developing each one of these skills so you can manage stress and distress in the midst of the pandemic. Remember that a fool gives full vent to his spirit, but a wise man quietly holds it back (Pro. 29:11).