RAISING YOUR EMOTIONAL INTELLIGENCE is an excellent practical guide to
inner peace. What makes this nonfiction work so good and worthwhile is its
ease of application, starting with a personal assessment test that provides
the reader with their current EQ level. Chapters are devoted to help the
individual at work, at home, and in any relationship (including a loved
one). This is a great self-help book that can assist anyone with
Bringing your words, actions, and even body language into sync with your 'shoulda, coulda, woulda's' is the theme of Dr. Segal's book. She wants you to open yourself up to your entire range of feelings and use the energy you will be releasing to get more out of life. She tells us to replace the phrase "I think" with "I feel." She wants us to experience the full range of our emotions from the good to the shameful to the scary and she wants us to do this consciously, living "in the moment' in a state of heightened awareness. I've been taking her advice, and it's a cool sensation. It reminds me of going back to aerobic exercise after a hiatus. As your blood travels to places that haven't felt it in a long time, fingers, toes and legs begin to itch and tingle. When you try Dr. Segal's techniques you'll see that the excitement of feeling again-or for the first time-is equally palpable.
I suppose I was initially skeptical, because of the Introduction to Psychology course I took in my freshman year of college. On day one the professor told us all about instinct: he said we don't have any. He maintained that modem man (or woman) was too far removed from our original survival mode to have any genetically programmed responses left. He said that what we called "a gut feel" was really judgment based on experience and intelligence.
Dr. Segal would beg to differ. She is a great believer in intuition, and she believes people will make better decisions for themselves if they tune in to their emotional reactions. In order to get us to that point, she employs a whole host of engagement devices: examples, quotes, tips, techniques and stories about her own experiences. A terrific teacher, she livens things up by asking us to fill in the blanks, rate ourselves one to ten and choose the best option in a number of situations. Not only does this workshop approach drive home her points, they form an arsenal of appropriate responses for touchy situations.
Raising Your Emotional Intelligence truly lives up to its subtitle, A Practical Guide. It is blessedly free of padding, jargon and mind-numbing theory. Rarest of all, it can be profitably enjoyed and utilized by everyone from the thoroughly self-analyzed to the psychological neophyte. Whether you need help dealing with your children, your boss, your husband, your parents or your siblings, it seems that Dr. Segal has addressed your particular concern or something close enough to it to be relevant. Who couldn't relate to the age-old dilemma embodied in "When High EQ Meets Low EQ: Dealing with a Low-EQ Lover' or the shrieks of anguish from the parents of teens who tell us, "My son dyed his hair green on one side and red on the other' and "My daughter pretends she doesn't know us?" Maybe misery loves company, but I find it a great comfort to know that others are struggling with the same issues I am. And it's an even greater comfort to know that wise and down-to-earth Dr. Segal is there to guide me through the mine fields of human relationships. There, I feel better already!