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Recent research shows that emotional intelligence today is significantly lower than it has been in the past. This is an unfortunate trend that can have a significant negative impact on both individuals and society. Because of this, understanding the importance of and working to increase emotional intelligence is more important than ever.

What is Emotional Intelligence?

Emotional intelligence is a crucial aspect of emotional and psychological health, and many skills and characteristics are associated with it. Some of these skills include understanding one’s own emotions and controlling one’s impulses. High emotional intelligence is also characterized by holding generally positive feelings about oneself. While emotional intelligence is involved in an individual’s happiness, it is also connected to healthy communication and relationships.

Why is Emotional Intelligence Important?

A person’s emotional intelligence significantly impacts their mental health and overall happiness. Because of this, low levels of emotional intelligence can have severe consequences. Research has shown a correlation between low emotional intelligence and high rates of mood disorders, anxiety symptoms, and suicidal ideation. Emotional intelligence is also essential for everyday functioning, as it is needed to maintain healthy relationships and make responsible decisions. Since it has such a significant impact on people’s lives, it is necessary to emphasize the importance of emotional intelligence.

What is Happening to Emotional Intelligence Today?

A recent study has shown that emotional intelligence is decreasing over time. Research has not yet confirmed the exact cause of this, but some ideas have been suggested to explain it. For example, this decrease in emotional intelligence may be related to an increase in the use of social media. This is likely because the use of social media tends to replace in-person interaction with online interaction, which does not offer the same opportunities for developing strong communication skills. 

Social media also often leads to the unhealthy habit of comparing oneself to one’s peers, negatively impacting a person’s self-esteem and happiness. This suggests that avoiding social media, or at least limiting its use, may help to improve emotional intelligence. Of course, stress unrelated to social media may also be causing, or at least influencing this trend. Further research will be necessary to determine the exact cause.