The Bio-Psycho-Social Model


Thinking differently about adversity has always been the tough part of improving one’s emotional intelligence (EI), especially in the midst of a crisis. Our goal as EI learners, however, is to think twice – maybe not in the midst of a crisis, but at some point soon after.

The suggestion that we will have to learn to think twice implies that we will expend at least that much more effort than we do now to solve our emotional problems.  EI learners know that when A happens, we often think B and feel C; just like we always have. Very little will ever change in that regard. But what EI learners know, as well, is that our options at C are not limited to our first thoughts and consequent emotional response.  We learn to think differently at B and feel a new C – an evolved emotional response.

****

Along with each old and new theory of EI, there seems to be a rather meandering use of new and old words and phrases – leading to more and more clarification – each clarification leading to endlessly more detail. So, EI teaching often includes a brave attempt at trying to stay clear and concrete in what may seem at times extraordinarily confusing. Without precision in your guide’s choice of words and phrases, you, the learner, will likely be lost, or even (forbid) uninterested – defeating both of your purposes.

I am reminded of a learner who came to me wholly intent on becoming an expert in emotional intelligence.

She gave herself a six-week deadline.

While I sat explaining the model, one fraught with complex sociological terms and biopsychosocial jargon, I noticed she was fighting off sleep. The whites of her eyes replaced her irises, right in the middle of my enthusiastic explanation of all things – the limbic system!

Can you imagine?

And this was a willing and well-intentioned learner!

The empirical evidence to support my theory of EI may be (for me) irrefutable.  I learned from my learner that day, however, that the value of my message may lie in how it is articulated – and how often I break for laughter.

I now know that maneuvering through the world of feelings, and trying to convey to others the often-confusing (and conflicting) philosophies related to emotion,  is best achieved using as little lingo as possible.  What lingo I do use, I like to make less complicated – more pedestrian; more consumable by the consumer. I am also now very careful not to take myself so seriously and to add a bit of humor to what I am teaching. (Nothing is funnier, and more beneficial, than when we can laugh at ourselves.) After all, EI education is not about how crafty and illusive your guide can be while trying to help you improve your EI.

Neither is it intended to be a comedy show.

It’s a balance.

An EI guide must pledge to pay more attention to the preciseness of h/er words and avoid the breadth and width of h/er boundless enthusiasm to explain everything.  Improving one’s EI is hard enough without making it deliberately humorless and more difficult.

The concept of emotional intelligence we use with eitheory might be described as an acquired skill or ability for actively resolving emotional problems using a bio-psycho-social frame of reference. Solving an emotional problem does not mean that the solution can only be one that brings you happiness.  EI learners and guides are not trying to help you achieve happiness in the face of all types of adversity. To do so would be an irresponsible and unachievable goal. The philosophy is more in line with the idea that if you make yourself angry you can make yourself incrementally less angry.

Positive incremental change indicates success when improving EI.

In fact, the solutions you find while improving your EI might be, at times, nothing more than incremental.  You might, for instance, express anger x 10 when you encounter misfortune.  But, using the eitheory, you may decrease your anger response to anger x 2.

Incremental change!

Celebrate it when it happens.

Improved emotional intelligence is not often an all-or-nothing emotional fix. In fact, there may be times when you maintain your anger without a single bit of change. Don’t worry; if you wait long enough, time will take care of nearly all of your emotional issues. But if you can learn to forgive yourself for making yourself angry, while you wait for your anger to subside, you have been successful at improving your EI. Learning to forgive oneself for behaving foolishly is actually a significant sign of improved EI.

EI does not suggest that you will ever be happy when you are facing adversity, emotional challenge, bereavement, hardship or harsh conditions.  It is very unlikely that you will ever use the skills found herein to move your emotions from anger to happiness.  You can, however, achieve contentment where you would normally settle on discontent.

Prepare for the inevitability of incremental change and be aware that it is most assuredly a sign of improvement.

Advertisements

59 responses

  1. Pingback: You can really push my buttons! | eitheory.com

  2. Pingback: What kind of crackpot was this? | eitheory.com

  3. Pingback: A partial list of my self-defeating truths | eitheory.com

  4. Pingback: No Exceptions | eitheory.com

  5. Pingback: The Bio-Psycho-Social Model | eitheory.com

  6. Pingback: Emotional Evolution | eitheory.com

  7. Pingback: Lemons and Jelly Beans | eitheory.com

  8. Pingback: I let it bother me | eitheory.com

  9. Pingback: EI vs. EQ for the win! | eitheory.com

  10. Pingback: Think Once and for All | eitheory.com

  11. Pingback: EI Requires Patience | eitheory.com

  12. Pingback: Measuring Your Emotional Intelligence | eitheory.com

  13. Pingback: Incremental Change | eitheory.com

  14. Pingback: Mindful Commitment | eitheory.com

  15. Pingback: Go Suck a Lemon | eitheory.com

  16. Pingback: Social Problem Solving | eitheory.com

  17. Pingback: Selfishness | eitheory.com

  18. Pingback: Think Twice – A Guide to Improved Emotional Intelligence | eitheory.com

  19. Pingback: Imagination | eitheory.com

  20. Pingback: Learn Your ABCs | eitheory.com

  21. Pingback: Think Twice | eitheory.com

  22. Pingback: Respond to the World with More Flexibility | eitheory.com

  23. Pingback: Emotional Intelligence Test | eitheory.com

  24. Pingback: Think Twice! | eitheory.com

  25. Pingback: Your Terms of Enragement | eitheory.com

  26. Pingback: You Make Yourself Feel | eitheory.com

  27. Pingback: What Is Emotional Intelligence (part ii) | eitheory.com

  28. Pingback: Thinking Twice | eitheory.com

  29. Pingback: Self-Talk | eitheory.com

  30. Pingback: What Is Emotional Intelligence? | eitheory.com

  31. Pingback: The Case of Elliot (part nine) | eitheory.com

  32. Pingback: Emotional Intelligence and Locus of Control | eitheory.com

  33. Pingback: Articulated Thought and EI Theory | eitheory.com

  34. Pingback: EITheory: A Biopsychosocial Intervention Model | eitheory.com

  35. Pingback: REBT vs. eitheory for the win! | eitheory.com

  36. Pingback: Prove it! | eitheory.com

  37. Pingback: What Do You Fear? | eitheory.com

  38. Pingback: Emotional Flexibility | eitheory.com

  39. Pingback: Terms of Enragement | eitheory.com

  40. Pingback: Emotional Intelligence – Best Practice | eitheory.com

  41. I wrote a blog entry inspired by a clinician’s use of the word “baseline” to describe her client’s behavior. When we communicate in such unclear ways we create the possibility for listeners to start nodding off.

  42. Pingback: Thinking Differently | eitheory.com

  43. Pingback: EI Theory – Part One | eitheory.com

  44. Pingback: EI Theory Part II – Emotion and Biology | eitheory.com

  45. Pingback: EI Theory Part Three – Emotion and Psychology | eitheory.com

  46. Pingback: EI Theory Part Four – Beliefs and Emotions | eitheory.com

  47. Pingback: Familiarity Breeds Competence | eitheory.com

  48. Pingback: Emotion is a biopsychosocial phenomenon | eitheory.com

  49. Pingback: Think Twice: A Learner’s Guide to Improved Emotional Intelligence | eitheory.com

  50. Pingback: What Am I Afraid Of? | eitheory.com

  51. Pingback: Criticism | eitheory.com

  52. Pingback: Push! | eitheory.com

  53. Pingback: All Behavior Has a Purpose | eitheory.com

  54. Pingback: Emotional Custom | eitheory.com

  55. Pingback: Biopsychosocial Intervention Strategies Using Emotional Intelligence Theory | eitheory.com

  56. Pingback: Emotional Wound Care | eitheory.com

  57. Pingback: Premeditated Impulsivity | eitheory.com

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s