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10 Sep 2012

Emotional Intelligence vs. Intuition (Pt 3): Problem Solving

This entry is part 3 of 6 in the series Emotional Intelligence vs. Intuition

One difference I pointed out in my original post between Emotional Intelligence (EI) and intuition was problem solving. Deeper examination of this difference further helps us understand why EI and intuition can’t really be subsets of one another. Yet, it’s not uncommon for EI practitioners to insist that they are.

Early on when researching the difference, I had asked a very experienced and knowledgeable EI researcher to explain the difference to me. She began by saying that first EI is much broader than intuition. I asked then this question:

How can EI be broader than intuition when EI is applied only in a social context and intuition can be applied both in a social and solitary context?

Whether one attribute is larger is irrelevant. The point was to show a difference in order to begin separating the two. Whereas intuition can help you solve a puzzle, a home improvement dilemma, a business investment; EI does not only if it involves the emotions of other people.

For instance, consider these research papers on the role of intuition in problem solving:

There is nothing in these works that even imply any kind of awareness, intelligence or observations of other humans’ emotions when discussing problem solving. The focus is on how intuition influences our thought processes. EI can’t help you solve daily problems involving you and tangible things or ideas unless they involve people.

Intuition can because it’s the product of the feelings and emotions that things and ideas trigger in us. The “feeling of knowing” is one and mentioned in the first of the papers above. Digging deeper into problem solving helps us to distinguish EI from intuition.


Series Navigation<< Emotional Intelligence vs. Intuition (Pt 2): Distinct as Head and HeartEmotional Intelligence vs. Intuition (Pt 4): Conscious vs. Unconscious >>

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