How to Make Intellectual and Emotional Intelligence Work for Each Other

Needless to say, everyone wants to be considered an intelligent and charismatic human being, fluent in emotional intelligence and a lover of intellectual pursuits. However, the truth is, in most people, only one type of intelligence is dominant, the other being underused and sometimes even straight up ignored. To compensate for this lack of equality, a debate has begun over which is more fundamental to live a full, enriching life and whether one is better than the other in terms of importance. What most people do not realize though, is how both are interconnected, and are meant to be used together instead of separately.

Intellectual intelligence, measured using the often untrustworthy intellectual quotient, or IQ, test, is considered a precursor to academic success. When people speak of achieving high grades on tests or acing a research project, this is the intelligence that is automatically assumed to be used during the process. Indeed, it is essential for adequate performance in fields heavily based on logic and reasoning, such as the sciences or mathematics, and even business. After all, a certain level of capability is required to close business deals, manage finances and engineer the best ways to attract customers.

Emotional intelligence, on the other hand, stems from empathy and sensitivity, allowing one to understand the feelings of another person and connect with them in a deep and meaningful way. As well, it is necessary for areas requiring a high level of communication, such as the arts. The level of one's emotional intelligence often dictates behaviour, and in turn, how others perceive them. Being able to act in socially appropriate ways endear a person in the minds of society, allowing them to belong and ace the more abstract parts of life including job interviews and networking opportunities.

As illustrated so far, both types of intelligence, although dominantly applicable to different subjects, are used regularly in everyday life. To be a truly well-rounded and successful individual, one has to possess and use both appropriately. The field of business, for example, is an area where emotional intelligence resides in harmony with its mental counterpart. In addition to administrative tasks, a businessman or woman must be able to entice and charm customers, negotiate deals with foreign parties, and get along with coworkers. Even out of the professional context, the existence of general intelligence is necessary for living a balanced lifestyle, split fairly equally between work, family, and friends.

Overall, the debate over which is more important, intellectual or emotional intelligence, is rendered moot as both should be regarded as equals, complementing instead of undermining each other. In order to be truly successful in life, one must develop and appreciate both, utilizing the wide repertoire of skills associated with them to further their career and personal lives. To summarize, although the two types of intelligence are rarely on the same level in terms of individual people, both are essential for creating a purposeful and thriving society.