Becoming emotionally literate is learning the alphabet, grammar and vocabulary of our emotional lives. It’s is the first step along the path of acquiring “emotional intelligence (EQ),” the quality that, along with IQ, can predict one’s success in life.
Emotions are an integral part of human nature. Through them, we respond to life in many different ways – such as with anger, happiness, fear, love, loneliness, etc.
Emotions influence our thoughts and actions; they inspire our needs; affect our bodies and impact our relationships.
Many of the problems in modern society are due, at least in part, to people being unable to understand and appropriately express emotion. Emotional Literacy is a preventive tool, which, properly utilized, can help solve many social ills, such as violence, illness, drug abuse, dysfunctional relationships, and global societal conflicts.
Emotional Literacy is universally relevant as well. It can benefit every individual, every organization, and every profession with the capacity to transform each person and their relationships.
Emotional Literacy is a key to living a full and rich life. It is basic to joy and enthusiasm, and fundamental to your ability to love and be loved.
By Ayman Sawaf
In a poll by USA Today, parents were asked what they most wanted to change in their children’s schools. A full 75% of all parents asked for emotional literacy – in some form. Parents’ most frequent request (36%) was the desire for more school counselors – a need mitigated by Emotional Literacy education. The second greatest request (33%) was the desire for emotional diagnosis of our kids before it was ‘too late’. The third most prolific desire was to ensure our kids are taught not to hate (18%).
Respected thought leaders including Rudolph Steiner, Daniel Goleman and Ayman Sawaf have written best-selling books emphasizing the value and practical application of teaching Emotional Literacy in schools.