The daily Nebraskan. ([Lincoln, Neb.) 1901-current, January 27, 1997, Page 5, Image 5

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Emotional sma.
Last Friday marked the anniver
sary of the theory of relativity — an
earth-shaking proclamation from a
rather simple man.
Albert Einstein, now regarded as
one of science’s leading men, started
life as an academic misfit. After
spending most of his early life
unable to function within traditional
educational paradigms, Einstein
proceeded to wow the world with his
To overcome such disparities and
reach such remarkable heights
required more than, sheer genius.
Einstein seemed to possess that •
elusive “something” that made him
Air too often, children (and
adults) are labeled according to their
IQ — limited because of their
placement on the bell curve.
The bell curve is a “quantitative”
weighting of IQ that through its
structure inherently declares higher
IQs better... regardless of what is
accomplished with that “intelli
But IQ obviously doesn’t explain
everything. Otherwise, Einstein’s
performance should have mirrored
his intelligence at a much earlier
IQ can’t explain National Merit
Scholars who fail out of school or
billionaires who never finish high
So what is the explanation? What
is that “something” that allowed
Einstein to overcome his stilted
How about the theory of emo
tional intelligence — EQ if you
It’s a relatively new theory
attempting to explain the
unquantifiable, the immeasurable.
Daniel Goleman’s book “Emo
tional Intelligence” says that “at
best, IQ contributes about 20 percenl
to the factors that determine life
success, which leaves about 80
percent to other forces.” Those other
forces range from geographic
location to upbringing to luck.
Emotional intelligence, IQ’s
subjective partner, addresses difficul
I like the idea that
there’s more to a
person’s makeup
than intellect.”
to measure characteristics that make
up who we are.
Goleman’s examples of these
characteristics: self-motivation and
persistence, especially in times of
frustration; controlling moods;
staying focused when faced with
overwhelming demands; putting
gratification on hold; and hope.
Basing success or even a person’s
value only on his “hardware” is
insane. It’s what a person can and
will do with that hardware that
I know brilliant people who have
dropped out of school and are
working jobs that are “below” their
abilities. Or people with near-perfect
GPA’s and little ambition. And
more often than not, people who —
without the possession of a high
GPA or IQ — do great things for
society. *
It’s so frustrating that so much
importance is placed on quantitative
measures like IQ or GPA. In
actuality, neither tells us very much
about who we are or quite frankly,
what we’re capable of.
Sure, IQ hints or alludes to a
person’s capabilities, but for the
most part... it’s limiting. A child
told early that they’re of average
intelligence, may never strive to |
accomplish more. j
In a similar vein, GPA is used as !
a measure of intelligence (rightly so i
or not). But it does not and cannot !
factor in die “other characteristics” !
of which Goleman writes.
For example, if you followed the
IQ and GPA “logic,” I should be a S
near (if not an actual) 4.0 student 6
studying^ a top university on full £
scholarship. GoodJjod I wish! I’m
not even close! My academic record §
defies those lauded “academic” u
standards and expectations.
Sojow has my life been derailed
from sure success (if you buy the
whole IQ thing), and why would I
let it? Because there are many other
things that influence me more than
the desire for a 4.0 (though the
scholarship money would’ve been
nice..?). “
ThingtJike the fact that I hate
studying from books. Or my extreme
ability to daydream or even my
desire to participate frequently in the
age-old endeavor of discourse, i.e., I
like to talk.
In response to stuffy academics
who proclaim the ultimate veracity
of IQ and-GPA, I stick out my
tongue. In the end, their scales leave
too much unanswered and unex
EQ, though by no means perfect
nor isolated from IQ, is a contempo
rary starting point for determining a
person’s life potential; I like the idea
that there’s mpre to a person’s
makeup than intellect.
Think of the things you value
about the people around you. More
likely than hot, intelligence is not
the first thing you name. Or the
fifth. Or the 10th.
Instead.of judging someone by his
or her intelligence, stop and look to
see if he or she is a good person.
After alii when the shit hits the
fan, it’s EQ that’s gonna keep you
out of the spray—not IQ.
Kennedy is a senior advertising
and broadcasting major and a
Daily Nebfaskan columnist.
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