Wednesday, October 19, 2005

Do I have a problem with my self-control?

After meeting the South-American guy a week and a half ago (A visit to a South-American guy in Kensington), I started worrying about my self-control? And then, surfing the cable channels one evening, I briefly saw something about emotional intelligence, which I’d never heard of before. Traditionally when people talk about intelligence they’re referring to logical reasoning, maths and verbal skills. Emotional intelligence however relates to how well one understands oneself and other people, how well one understands everyone’s emotions, and how well one can control one's own emotions.

What I saw on TV was a simple test which was being suggested for very young children to measure their emotional intelligence. A parent puts the child in a room, and in front of the child they put a chocolate, or whatever the child’s favourite treat is. They then say “I’ll be back in a couple of minutes. You can eat the chocolate if you want. But if you don’t eat the chocolate and wait for me to come back you can have two chocolates instead”. The idea is that children who wait to get two chocolates are more emotionally intelligent that children who just gobble the one chocolate.

When I saw this I knew I did have something to worry about, because I don’t think I’ve got much self-control when it comes to meeting other guys for fun. A cock in the hand is worth two on the internet, so to speak. So I found an online EQ test. EQ is to emotional intelligence what IQ is to traditional intelligence. Would the test pin-point my lack of self-control? No, it turned out. I scored above average on most aspects including all the self-awareness measures, although I was below average on “Social insight and empathy”. Probably a standard result for investment bankers?

No surprise, I guess, that someone who worries about their self-control in fact scores highly on self-awareness. None the less, a minor success in one type of EQ test doesn’t mean that I’m not addicted to casual sex!

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