Know Yourself

Intellectual Quotient/Intelligence

What does your level of intelligence or IQ have to do with pain management? People with a high IQ can drive themselves relentlessly to the point of both physical and mental exhaustion. 

Intellectual quotient tests are designed to assess human intelligence.  Many people have never had their IQ tested yet they do have a very high IQ.  This makes them more likely to be driven individuals who may push themselves to “burn out.”  People experiencing burnout feel like they have nothing left to give. So, they may then end up lacking the motivation to understand their own needs. 

When you are burnt out, your body produces adrenaline and cortisol at very high levels and this keeps you functioning.  It gives you a false sense of energy when really you are existing off chemicals.  Eventually these chemicals have flooded your body to saturation point and your body “crashes.”  At this stage you are too exhausted to care or understand how to get out of this phase.

This burnout phase can –  in turn – trigger all types of symptoms and diseases. Your mental health can also be affected.  You may experience feelings of helplessness, hopelessness, inadequacy, resentment, anger and sadness alongside exhaustion, inflammation and physical pain.

Emotional Intelligence

What is Emotional Intelligence or Emotional Quotient? It’s the ability to manage, understand and use your emotions in a positive way – for your own good and the good of others.  It also encompasses a range of core human experience:

  • empathy, the ability to understand and recognise the emotions that others are presenting,
  • it affects how you process and overcome your own challenges and the challenges of others and
  • it helps you stay calm and diffuse difficult situations or conflicting opinions.

Emotional Intelligence is a skillset and ability that some people possess naturally.  Others may need to spend many years learning how to be more emotionally stable.  Often those with a high I.Q. may possess a lower EQ. This can lead to problems in the workplace, relationships, and in their physical and emotional wellbeing. 

A person with a low EQ may not realise this, which could affect how they approach life situations. When friction arises, they may think they are not the ones at fault, and blame others around them instead.  It can be very difficult to reason with a person that has an underdeveloped E.Q.  Developing your EQ is a journey of self-management.  But with the right support, understanding and work, you can develop your EQ.

How to recognise if you have a low E.Q.

Take a quick look through this checklist and see if you recognise these issues:

  • You cannot control impulsive behaviours and feelings.
  • You find it difficult to be self-motivated and stay on task
  • You find it difficult to accept differing opinions to your own
  • You discount others’ feelings, emotions and ideas
  • You are not good in conflict situations
  • Difficulty with your “filter”
  • Difficulty with boundaries
  • Difficulty with patience
  • Have very high expectations/standards of yourself and may expect the same standards of others.
  • Disappointed if others cannot keep up or match your expectations or standards.

Social Intelligence

Social Intelligence is how comfortable and successful we are in social settings.  This comes from how well we know ourselves and how comfortable we are with ourselves.  

A high I.Q or overthinking brain may lead to a lack of social intelligence.  You may overthink conversations which don’t need that level of focus or questioning.  In social settings you may talk too much or be completely silent. 

Good Social Intelligence is a maturity within oneself, which creates balance in our social interactions with others. 

Lack of Social Intelligence may leave you feeling like you need to contribute all the conversation. So you may then appear overly confident. Or you may hold off on contributing to a conversation because you are overthinking it. Then, by the time you have thought about a funny or appropriate response the conversation topic has passed. So you end up coming across as aloof.

Using Intelligences to Know Yourself

Emotional and Social Intelligence are learned skillsets.  When all 3 Intelligences are balanced then the risk of burnout is lower. This is because you know yourself better and can  balance of expectations of yourself and others. This really helps with Pain Management whether this is Mental, Physical or Emotional.

It is really important that each generation helps the next generations to understand and balance the 3 Intelligences.

Feedback on Intelligences

I would really appreciate your input on this area over in my Community Forum. 

Questions to consider include: 

1. Given my age, social life and career, what struggles do I face with these 3 Intelligences?
2. What areas do I still need to work on?
3. What advice would I give to my younger or older self about balancing out these intelligences?