Customer Review

26 of 26 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Emotionally intelligent book, 19 April 2010
This review is from: The Emotionally Intelligent Social Worker (Paperback)
As a mental health practitioner I have found this book very useful in thinking about how emotions influence our lives. As Howe says at the very start of the book 'We are creatures saturated by feelings'. The book is easy to read and looks at the importance of being able regulate our emotions in order to function well, not just with our emotions and feelings, but in every sphere of life e.g. academically and socially. The concept of 'emotional intelligence' is clearly explained as are the conditions under which this is nurtured and developed. The book also gives a good developmental view of emotional development and the importance of attachment. How will it help social workers? Howe postulates that sensitive practitioners (who are emotionally intelligent) are more likely to work well with clients who, through their life experiences, are likely to be afflicted by all sort of difficulties, especially chronic stress. In common with other research, Howe states that the quality of the relationship between client and worker is the most significant way that positive change can be created as clients may then take the risk to change. This is in the context of a relationship where powerful feelings - often negative - can be tolerated and understood. In the beleaguered world of social work I found this a refreshing book that should be on all social work courses as a strong antidote to the bureaucratic and form filling endeavours that are robbing social workers of their most powerful assets - themselves (or their emotional selves, as Howe might say) . My only criticism is that among the therapeutic approaches considered, Howe does not mention the systemic approach, most popularly used in family therapy. As this is a common therapeutic framework used in both social work and child mental health settings, I wondered why it was absent. However, all in all, this is a great book that I will be using and referring to regularly in my work.
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