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Emotional Intelligence of the Prophet Muhammad sallallaahu ‘alayhi wasallam From a talk by Ustadhah S. Ahmed Zaynab Academy Online 17 November 2019 Definition of EI (Emotional Intelligence) Emotional Intelligence is the ability to be self-aware of one’s own emotions as well as the emotions of others (empathy) while being able to control and manage one’s own emotions. EI has three components: · Self-awareness · Self-management When one is aware of, understands and acknowledge one’s emotions, then one can manage them better. We need to know what we are feeling and why we are feeling this way in order to figure out the best way to react. · Empathy Empathy is the ability to be aware of the emotions of others and understand from their perspective. By mastering all three components one can enhance one’s personal and professional life. History of EI Peter Salovey and John D. Mayer coined the term ‘Emotional Intelligence’ in 1990. Later Daniel Goleman wrote a book called, “Emotional Intelligence.” He said that it was not cognitive intelligence that guaranteed business success but emotional intelligence. According to him, one key benefit is that “emotional intelligence can help people make better decisions.” This increased effectiveness is invaluable for business, essential for education, and transformational for personal life. He described emotionally intelligent people as those with four characteristics: They were good at understanding their own emotions (self-awareness) They were good at managing their emotions (self-management) They were empathetic to the emotional drives of other people (social awareness) They were good at handling other people’s emotions (social skills) (History of EI is not from the talk) Emotional Intelligence in the Light of the Sunnah As Muslims we should look at EI in the light of the Qur’an and Sunnah of our Prophet sallallaahu ‘alayhi wasallam and in terms of the success of the Aakhirah. Self-awareness for us is not just being aware of our emotions and managing them, but also includes our intentions. When we study the Seerah and Hadith we see that the Prophet sallallaahu ‘alayhi wasallam was an extremely emotionally intelligent person. There are lessons for us in becoming emotionally intelligent people in the way he understood his own emotions, acknowledged and managed them and the way he interacted with everyone around him, teaching them to be emotionally intelligent people. When overcome with grief or in stressful situations we are not even aware of what we are feeling and often end up blaming others. Therefore cognition/realisation of feelings is very important in combatting negative feelings and channelling them to positive ones