For a stronger marriage, ask yourself, “What’s my EQ?”
While your IQ is a measure of your intelligence, your EQ is a measure of your “emotional intelligence.”
That term was coined in 1995 by Daniel Goleman, who first applied the concept to businessmen and women. As he defined it, emotional intelligence is the degree to which you are able to make healthy relational choices based on your understanding of your emotions and those around you. The concept eventually spilled outside of the business world into other arenas.
A great take on the EQ concept within marriage comes from Drs. Dave and Jan Stoop. Before Dave died earlier this year, he and Jan were married for 63 years and lead marriage seminars and retreats. They wrote a book together called The Emotionally Healthy Marriage: Growing Closer by Understanding Each Other.
Dave and Jan offer the acronym SMART for five facets of emotional intelligence in marriage:
- S – Self-awareness of what I feel
- M – Managing my emotions
- A – Accountability to my spouse and to other couples
- R – Reading my spouse’s emotions (A.K.A. – Empathy)
- T – Together in the land of emotion
We’re re-airing a conversation we had with Dave and Jan on our Focus on the Family Broadcast “Understanding Your Spouse’s Emotions.” From newlyweds to those who have celebrated their diamond anniversary, the Stoops can help couples improve their EQ and deepen their love for each other.
The late Dr. Dave Stoop was the founder and director of the Center for Family Therapy. Dr. Jan Stoop is also a counselor. The Emotionally Healthy Marriage: Growing Closer by Understanding Each Other is available for a gift of any amount. Visit our website or give us a call at 1-800-A-FAMILY (232-6459).