Chronic stress in childhood is a major concern for parents everywhere. Whether your child is overcoming a problem at school or dealing with a recent trauma, it’s important for parents to find ways to relieve stress where they can. That’s why understanding chronic stress is just as important as finding ways to ease it.
In 1990, the world was introduced to the term “emotional intelligence” (aka EI or EQ) as a new means to understand human intellect when Peter Solovey and John D. Mayer posited the significance of EQ in their article titled “Emotional Intelligence.”
Depression and anxiety are significant mental health concerns for children. According to the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH), more than a quarter of teens (ages 13-18) suffer from anxiety disorders and almost 6 percent battle with a “severe form” of the disorder. The NIMH also reports that “in 2015, an estimated 3 million adolescents aged 12 to 17 in the United States had at least one major depressive episode in the past year.”
Emotional intelligence wasn’t always a known—or acknowledged—component of success until 1990 when psychologists John D. Mayer and Peter Salovey published their paper on what would later become a new way of defining intelligence. Not only did the paper introduce the term ‘emotional intelligence’ or EQ to the world, it also led to a new understanding of how our emotional make-up impacts our lives.
The book series turned popular Netflix drama “Thirteen Reasons Why” thrust the topic of teenage suicide back in the top issues plaguing the minds and hearts of school administrators and parents. Not only did the series propel suicide back into the conversation, it also brought attention to the rising number of teens contemplating—and committing—suicide.
Many perceive academic success as being solely dependent on a child’s intellectual abilities. While a strong intellect and high IQ do benefit children in the classroom, their emotional intelligence or EQ is just as important to their academic achievement. Across the country schools are embracing a wider approach to student success in the classroom, and Social Emotional Learning programs are at the heart of the education revolution.
It’s shocking, but somewhere between one in four and one in three students in the U.S. has been the target of a bully. Bullying is most prevalent in middle school and targets students who are seen as being different. Students who are bullied experience increased feelings of sadness and loneliness which can lead to depression and anxiety.
According to many experts, having an enhanced capacity to understand one’s own emotions as well as those of others, is a pivotal determinant of success, even arguably more so than a high IQ. This skill is referred to as emotional intelligence (EQ).