Emotional Intelligence in Intimate Relationships: The Pathway to Longevity

Posted by Dr. Nilda Perez in Emotional Intelligence, Marriage/Relationships | 0 comments

To succeed in life you must have achieved high levels of emotional intelligence. And although many people can exhibit high levels of emotional intelligence in their business and work environment they can lack severely in their personal relationships.

In my previous article I define emotional intelligence  as a pattern of competencies in the areas of awareness of, self-control, the ability to clearly express emotions and handle interpersonal relationships rationally and with compassion. High levels of emotional intelligence should be exhibited in both professional and personal relationships.

Historically very little weight was place on the emotion as aptitude test. IQ was always the determining factor. Now psychology researchers such as Caruso, Mayer, Salovey and Goldman recognized that those with high emotional intelligence (EI) levels have a much better chance at success in their personal and professional space. It is said that it is actually the highest predictor of achievement in every sphere of life.

After looking through the strengths of EI one might ask ‘how is this relevant to personal relationships?’ Since it would seem that it is in personal relationships that you can freely express oneself and have the ability to ‘let your hair down’. Theorist indicate that frequently emotionally intelligent individuals have longer and happier marriages than their counter-parts.


Julie Fitness of Macquarie University states that, psychologists have researched other emotional development in the context of happiness and stability in marriage, many of which are parallel with aspects of EI: such as emotional perception and expression, empathy, and emotional knowledge and understanding.

So let’s go through the emotional intelligence aspects which apply to intimate relationships:



Let’s revise the five characteristics in real life scenarios:

Self-awareness – Are you mindful about how you express yourself while stressed, under pressure or upset?

Self-regulation – Are you carefully choosing your words and making every attempt not to be cutting or mean when you are upset, stressed or under pressure?

Motivation – Are you staying positive when thinking about the past situations? Finding the positive side in every circumstance?  Do you try to be a peacemaker in your relationship?

Empathy – When you are upset, stressed or under pressure are you considering your partner’s feelings? When your partner is stressed and may lash out at you are you considering his stress level and trying to keep the peace?

Social skills – Do you prefer to be alone with your partner or are you comfortable in social settings? Are you embracing of your partner’s family, friends and co-workers?

It is those who master EI in their relationship that have the best chance of maintaining satisfaction and longevity in their relationship. Yes, mastering emotional intelligence in intimate relationships is key.

Dr. Nilda Perez

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