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.
I think David Howe is one of my favourite writers. I would recommend this book for anyone who is interested in how people communicate and what lies beneath. It explores more deeply the aspects that contribute to good communication and also helps you to understand yourself as a practitioner.
This book covers the academic grounding about emotions and the part they do and should play in everyday social work. Helpful to emphasise the role of reflective supervision as opposed to no supervision or just time spent on management accountability.
I have only dipped in and out of this book so far as reference material for an essay. I feel that this may be the beauty of this book, I can refer back to it throughout my studies and future career to remind myself of the important factors required of an emotionally intelligent social worker. It is easy to understand and very readable.
This book echoed my own thoughts but in the current climate in social work with its lack of reflective practice and an holistic approach to the child, how can the NQSW incorporate this into their service? Finance drives intervention, its not the fault of their initial training or self learning.
This book was on my reading list for my social work degree module. When I started reading it I loved it immediately. Very clear and has really made me think about my own reactions, emotions and responses to situations. It is easy to read and retain the information. I can't say a bad thing about it.