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Emotional Intelligence as a "Clue" on our Healing Journey

Updated: Jun 1, 2022

by Doug Robinette

For a long time, I’ve thought of my healing journey as a “treasure hunt”. The treasure is the healing encounter with Christ – that moment when He touches my brokenness with that amazing love and understanding and healing that only He can bring. The hunt is the search for the broken place, the wound that has yet to be healed. Unlike the treasure hunts in the movies, there isn’t a specific treasure map that we can follow, but there are “clues” – things like dysfunctional behaviors, emotional upheaval, lies and false beliefs – that can lead us to the wounds that so desperately need His healing touch.

There are many ways for us to find clues. One of the ways I’ve found very useful is emotional intelligence (EQ). Since we were made for relationships with one another, it stands to reason that our brokenness – those wounds that we all bring into the relationships, will often show up in relationship. To see how that works, let’s first do a quick refresher on EQ.

The concept dates back to the 1960s, but Daniel Goleman’s book in 1995 made this idea popular. Here is a definition of EQ from the Institute for Health and Human Potential: “The ability to recognize, understand and manage our own emotions and the ability to recognize, understand and influence the emotions of others”.

Early in my coaching career, I was exposed to an EQ assessment tool. I was so impressed with the tool, I got certified as a practitioner. The tool measures:


  • Our access to a range of feelings

  • Positive versus negative orientation

  • Self versus other orientation

  • Our ability to be balanced in relying on thoughts, wants, and feelings as we interact and make choices

  • Empathy and empathy accuracy