Why Introspection Is Important

Author Kristin Wong , Gizmodo Media From lifehacker

We know emotional intelligence is important. It helps us empathize with other people so we communicate better and fight less. It helps us understand our own actions so we can be more productive and less reactionary. It’s not always easy, though, and this video from the School of Life explains how it can go wrong.

Using the Androcles and the Lion fable, the video makes a really powerful point about reacting vs. responding. To sum it up, it’s easy to get angry, act like an ass, and take our stress out on other people without realizing the root of our problem (the proverbial thorn). We go on reacting like this instead of actually addressing the problem. Or we know there’s a problem but make one of the following mistakes:

  • We diagnosis incorrectly: Instead of getting to the root of the problem, you blame something (or someone) else.
  • We ignore the pain: We tell ourselves it’s really not that big of a deal so we “suck it up” and ignore it.
  • We come up with the wrong solution: As they put it “we might come up with unfounded, confused schemes to solve problems we don’t understand.”

“Fortunately there’s almost always information about what is really wrong. Our stream-of-consciousness contains a reservoir of muddled hints about our woes which need to be gathered and decoded. The art of living is to a large measure dependent on an ability to locate our thorns accurately and in good time so that we will not forever be condemned to suffer our symptoms and terrify strangers with our roars.”

It’s easier to ignore the problem, but introspection is crucial to our emotional intelligence, our relationships, and our productivity.

Why Introspection Matters | The School of Life

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January 24, 2017

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