You’ve likely heard about IQ tests or intelligence quotients wherein individuals are measured to determine how “smart” they are. Essentially, a person answers multiple questions to receive a total score that determines their level of human intelligence. These questions will cover a range of topics, including mathematical ability, analytical thinking, short-term memory, spatial recognition, and much more. But what about emotional intelligence?
Have you heard of Emotional Intelligence (EI) or Emotional Quotient (EQ) testing before? EQ is a measure of one’s emotional intelligence. When it comes to achieving success in your personal and professional life, your emotional intelligence can be just as important as your intellectual ability. In fact, some experts speculate that it’s even more important.
What is Emotional Intelligence (EI)?
Emotional intelligence impacts so many areas of your day-to-day life, but many people don’t even realize it’s something they should be looking at or paying attention to. It plays a huge role in the way you manage your behavior, as well as the way you interact with others in terms of defusing conflict, empathizing with their emotions, and communicating effectively. Emotional intelligence is the ability to identify, understand, and leverage emotions in a positive manner.
Those with a high level of emotional intelligence tend to find it easier to build strong, long-lasting relationships, maintain a successful position at work, and overall, enjoy life to the fullest extent. There are three primary skills that are included in a person’s emotional intelligence:
- The ability to identify and name the emotions you feel
- The ability to manage those emotions and help others do the same
- The ability to leverage those emotions in common tasks, such as problem-solving
Emotional intelligence is what we depend on to have deep relationships with others, empathize with the people around us, and ultimately, understand ourselves better. If we don’t have emotional intelligence, it’s hard to live an authentic, healthy life. Although other forms of intelligence are important, emotional intelligence plays a major role in our lives — connecting with other forms of intelligence to help us live the best life possible.
The Importance of Emotional Intelligence
Those who are emotionally intelligent can identify and manage their emotions, this typically requires a sense of awareness and mindfulness. From frustration to anger to sadness and everything in between; allowing them to remain more stable while avoiding conflict. They are highly conscious of not only their emotional state but the emotional state of others as well. This means they’re able to thrive in social environments — connecting better with friends, family members, and romantic partners.
Consider this: you probably know some incredibly intelligent people who aren’t exactly successful or fulfilled in life. While it’s fantastic to be academically smart, it’s hard to thrive in your personal or professional life without the ability to maintain successful relationships with others. Your IQ can land you a great job, but your EQ will help you manage the stress of colleagues, deadlines, and other factors.
So how important is your emotional intelligence? We know it’s vital to success throughout your day-to-day life, but what areas of your life are truly impacted by your emotional intelligence?
Where and How EI Impacts Us
Here are four key areas to consider:
CareerThe workplace can be stressful, especially if you’re in a position wherein you need to lead others. If you can’t relate to others or pick up on their emotions, it’s hard to help them succeed. Emotional intelligence plays a huge role at work; allowing employees or managers to handle deadlines, motivate themselves and/or others, and much more.
Mental healthYour mental health is so important, but many people don’t take the time they need to take care of themselves. This is where emotional intelligence comes in handy. You’re able to notice when you’re running on empty and take the appropriate measures to give yourself a bit of self-care. This is key to managing anxiety, depression, and other issues.
Physical healthThis goes along with the point above about mental health. If you’re not properly managing your stress and/or anxiety levels, you can end up with a range of serious health problems. This might include infertility, heart attack and stroke, and other issues that are dangerous. It’s critical to watch your emotional state for the purpose of maintaining your overall health.
RelationshipsHow many relationships would be improved if the two people within the relationship simply communicated how they felt? Most misunderstandings result from miscommunication. Emotional intelligence means you’re able to identify your feelings, express them to another person, and above all, take note of how they’re feeling and sympathize. This goes a long way in relationships.
At the end of the day, emotional intelligence is vital for absolutely everyone who wants to thrive in their personal and professional life.
How Accurate are Emotional Quotient (EQ) Tests?
IQ tests are known for their ability to measure cognitive capacity, however, EQ tests are a bit more complicated as there’s no validated psychometric test or scale known for emotional intelligence. Many experts argue that emotional intelligence isn’t necessarily a construct. Therefore, EQ tests are simply a way of measuring various interpersonal skills.
Types of EQ Tests
There are many quizzes available online. You have to make sure you’re finding the most accurate option possible. Typically, there are four ways to measure emotional intelligence:
- Abilities-based tests, such as MSCEIT – this EQ test measures how you perceive emotions; the ability to utilize emotions to communicate feelings; the capacity to understand emotional information; and the ability to manage emotions
- Competency-based tests, such as ESCI – this comprises of 12 competency scales, which include self awareness as well as the ability to manage conflict, work in a team setting, and read a group’s emotions and power relationships
- Trait-based tests, such as the Bar-On EQi – this emotional intelligence testing has 5 categories that are measured: Intrapersonal, interpersonal, stress management, adaptability and general mood scale
- Behavior-based tests, such as the Genos – this type of EQ test has 6 key emotional intelligent competencies: self-awareness, awareness of others, authenticity, emotional reasoning, self-management and positive influence
When the most objective, accurate test is required, the MSCEIT is the most trusted test according to various research. However, all tests will determine your level of emotional intelligence to some degree of accuracy.
Free Emotional Intelligence Tests
If you’re looking to measure your EQ, there are a few good websites to check out. First and foremost, remember to make sure you’re using a website that offers a test based on actual research. You want to make sure you’re finding a website that will give you the most accurate results. Here are five of the best websites available to test your EQ:
1. Free Emotional Intelligence Test at Verywell Mind
Test length: 5-10 minutes
Number of questions: 10 questions
Verywell Mind is a trusted online resource that offers a range of resources designed to help individuals improve their mental health. They have a library filled with thousands of pieces of content that have been written by over 100 different healthcare professionals and industry experts. Kendra Cherry, author and educator, developed the EQ test found on the website. It’s been medically reviewed by a board-certified physician; giving users peace of mind knowing the test is backed.
There are 10 questions and they’re all fairly simple. The test takes approximately 5-10 minutes to complete. It’s entirely free, and although it’s fairly over-simplified, it does a good job at testing where your EQ stands. The 10 questions give you four options each — determining your way of thinking for each circumstance. Once you complete the 10 questions, you’re able to get results right away on a screen that shows low or high emotional intelligence.
2. Free EI Test at Harvard Business Review
Test length: 20 minutes
Number of questions: 25
Harvard Business Publishing is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Harvard University. They publish Harvard Business Review, a general management magazine that’s a great resource for many individuals, 6 times per year. They offer 25 question quizzes, which was published by Annie McKee, the Director of the PennCLO Executive Doctoral Program and senior personnel at the University of Pennsylvania. For each of the 25 questions, there are 6 answers: never, rarely, sometimes, frequently, most of the time, and always.
The test does a great job of determining your level of emotional intelligence in various scenarios. Each question is focused on the person taking the test; asking questions about their ability to manage stress, adjust goals, and more. It takes approximately 20 minutes to complete and you receive results right away on the screen. The results are determined based on the five important EI competencies — making it fairly accurate.
3. Free Emotional Intelligence Testing at Psychtests
Test length: 1 hour
Number of questions: 341
Psychtests offers a range of tests and quizzes designed to help individuals, professionals, and businesses. The EQ test is incredibly thorough and in-depth with a total of 341 questions, most of which have at least 7 responses to select an answer from.
While some of the questions are text-based, some of them are a bit more interactive. For instance, one question shows a group of people and asks you to identify what one person in the group is feeling. Although there is no mention of how the test was developed or how credible the test is, it does appear to give rather accurate results due to the in-depth nature of the test.
You’re able to choose responses that suit your typical feelings and/or behaviors. You should expect to spend approximately an hour taking this test, and once you’re finished, you’ll receive a snapshot report featuring an introduction, a graph, and a personalized result. You do have the option to purchase the full results, but what you do receive is rather insightful as is.
4. Free Emotional Intelligence Test at My Emotions
Test length: 15 minutes
Number of questions: 16
My Emotions is a great website if you’re looking to take a range of free online quizzes. Their emotional intelligence test comes from the University of Central Florida, a trusted educational institution; giving you a sense of credibility right away.
In fact, the EQ test seems to be part of an educational research project titled “an examination of emotional competency.” There is also contact information for Dr. Dana Joseph, Faculty Supervisor, that allows you to ask questions or voice your concerns about the quiz.
There are 16 questions — taking a total of approximately 15 minutes to complete. Once you’ve completed the test, you’re given the results right away on the screen. The results are given in the form of a self-emotion appraisal score on a seven-point scale. You’ll get a breakdown of the score, as well as links from educational resources to give you more information.
5. Free EI Test at Alpha High IQ Society
Test length: 24 minutes
Number of questions: 10
Alpha High IQ Society is well-known for its IQ tests, however, they also offer an EQ test that’s entirely free and timed. You’re given 10 questions to answer within 24 minutes. Daniel Goleman, author of a best-selling book called “Emotional Intelligence,” developed the test to give individuals the ability to test how emotionally intelligent they are. The website does state that no test can measure EQ to the same degree of accuracy as IQ, but the test will give you the closest possible result.
Although the test is entirely free, you will have to provide your name and an email address to view your results. Typically, most people will finish the test quicker than the website’s countdown timer. The questions are very focused on actual scenarios, some of which seem outlandish. They do, however, seem to do a good job of determining your behavior and/or feelings in various circumstances.
How to Improve Your EQ Measurement
Fortunately, the skills behind emotional intelligence can be worked on and learned. If you feel you have low emotional intelligence or you’re looking to increase your emotional intelligence for any reason, it’s certainly possible. However, you must practice the skills behind emotional intelligence throughout your day-to-day life. It’s not something you can read or learn through research. It’s something developed through consistent practice. Here are two important tips to help you improve your EQ:
Focus on Managing Stress
Stress can be an incredibly powerful emotion. In fact, many people struggle with functioning properly when stressful situations arise. First and foremost, start trying to realize when you’re stressed. Pay attention to how your body feels. Do your muscles get tense? Does your breathing get shallow? Know the signs of stress and be ready to identify them. Once you’ve started identifying the signs of stress, try a few different techniques designed to minimize it. For instance, you might listen to relaxing music or talk to a friend.
Connect with Your Emotions
Many of us don’t realize how often we try to avoid our emotions, but in reality, it’s often easier to avoid them than it is to face them. Try to connect with your emotions in terms of allowing yourself to feel them. Spend some time thinking about your relationship with your emotions. Do you experience physical sensations alongside certain emotions? Do you allow your emotions to factor into your decision-making? Next time you’re feeling something strongly, don’t distract yourself — focus on what you’re feeling.
Mindfulness is the practice of focusing on the present moment without judgment. Mindfulness allows you to develop your sense of awareness without your stories or thoughts that typically influence your experience. Being mindful gives you the capability to have self-awareness and awareness of others among other competencies that are measured for emotional intelligence.
At the end of the day, emotional intelligence is something you can learn at any point in your life. If you don’t feel you have a high level of emotional intelligence right now, try to spend more time being aware of your emotions. Remember, it’s important to identify them before you begin trying to manage them. Once you’ve achieved emotional intelligence, you’re able to achieve a higher level of success in your personal and professional life.
Have you tested your Emotional Intelligence? Care to share the results in the comments?