Emotional Illiteracy!! When our "BRAIN lacks HEART"

in #writing6 years ago (edited)

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There are many people who suffer from emotional illiteracy. They are proficient in mastering multiple competencies, they have endless degrees and master's degrees, but they do the same emotional management as a three year old child. This learning does not come from the factory and is what we want or not, a pending issue to which we should devote more resources ...

Most of us know what are the principles of good physical health, namely: a balanced diet and as natural as possible, some exercise, sleep every night between 7 and 9 hours and perform regular medical check-ups to make sure everything goes well .

When you empathize with another person, you give that person psychological air. "
-Stephen R. Covey-

However, if there is something that we neglect almost alarmingly, it is what is contained between our ears: the brain. Now, we are not referring to that set of nerve cells, structures and convolutions. It is necessary to focus attention on the indicators of our emotional health, that is, on that ability to feel life and our relationships, in the state of that faculty to understand, control and modify our own and other's moods ...

The human being is much more than a series of linguistic, mathematical or technological competences. We are, above all, social and emotional beings, dimensions that are often neglected, and even undervalued in educational institutions. Because, let's face it, it will be of little use to know how to solve a second-degree equation if we are unable, for example, to communicate effectively and to empathize with those around us.

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What is emotional illiteracy?

We know that the term "illiteracy" has a negative connotation. However, we can not call another psychosocial reality more than obvious. Let's take an example, nowadays there is a lot of talk about the figure of transforming leaders. People capable of energizing an organization thanks to their good handling of emotional intelligence, motivation, their gift to produce impact on others and create environments where people can make use of their creativity.

Sometimes ideas are sold that in reality, shine by their absence. Thus, it is quite common to find managers or business leaders unable, not only to inspire others, but with a void ability to control their emotions, their frustration, their anger ... They are like 3-year-old children angry at not getting what they they desire, completely situated in that egocentric thought defined by Piaget in his time.


Let's see, however, what dimensions characterize emotional illiteracy.


  • Inability to understand and manage one's emotions.
  • Difficulty to understand those of others.
  • This lack of emotional self-awareness often places them in very sensitive areas. They react excessively to any problem, feel overwhelmed and overcome any difficulty, whether small or large.
  • They do not empathize, they are unable to situate themselves in the eyes of others, to understand realities different from theirs.
  • Their social skills are very rigid and although sometimes they can develop, they lack sensitivity, assertiveness and that authentic closeness with which to create significant bonds and not just relationships motivated by personal interest.
  • On the other hand, the costs of emotional illiteracy can be enormous: polarized thinking, repression, racism or sexism, narcissism, obsessive need to be right.

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Also, there is a no less important fact that should be remembered. Emotional illiteracy, that is, lack of psychological resources and emotional mechanisms with which to manage better dimensions such as sadness, anger, fear or disappointment, makes us in turn much more vulnerable to a series of mental disorders.

Thus, conditions such as depression or chronic anxiety states are very common in profiles with little or no ability to better manage those internal states.

The importance of educating in Emotional Intelligence

We know that it is already a slogan: "we must educate in Emotional Intelligence", we must train in these skills, be more apt in the matter of emotions. We have heard it ad nauseam, we have read books, we have done courses and we say yes with our heads every time we are reminded of the importance of having a greater competence in this ability.

However, the gaps still exist. Thus, and although in some educational curricula of certain schools this objective already appears, we can not overlook something equal or more important. Before teachers train children in the mastery of their thoughts and emotions, they too should be trained beforehand.

"Your intellect may be confused, but your emotions will never lie to you"
-Roger Ebert-

Often, we ourselves reach our adult stage with a world of insecurities. We also wake up every day aware that we lack tools to master our emotions, as well as certain skills to better face adversity. In this way, if we do not begin in the first place by ourselves making self-awareness of our emotional illiteracy, we will hardly have that talent to motivate the little ones, to train them in empathy, assertiveness or in social skills ...

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A good "emotional literacy" gives us great benefits. Thus, something that we will learn in the first place is that each emotion has its space and its usefulness, that differentiating between "negative" and "positive" emotions is not always right, because in reality, those states that we often avoid feeling as much as sadness or disappointment, they have their spaces of knowledge, their usefulness and their valuable meaning.

Emotions therefore do not run away, they face to know what they want to tell us. It is a sensational way of self knowledge that gives us strengths, which offers our eyes a wider prism ... at the same time flexible. Therefore, do not set aside or despise the need to be "up to date" in terms of emotions. Let's attend to those inner worlds where we can recognize, express, manage and transform those feelings so that they always flow in our favor and not against us ...



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             All the images were taken from the public domain

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                                          @joelgonz1982

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