Social intelligence: Spread the Love


Dr Suhaib Ashraf Bhat
Improving one’s level of social intelligence requires intellectual effort and acquisition of knowledge, as well as practical, behavioural effort.With regard to intellectual effort and acquiring knowledge, it is attained by learning the noble characteristics that have to do with dealing with people in general terms, and learning the ideal ways of dealing with transgression and hypocrisy, and bad characteristics in particular. 
With regard to practical, behavioural effort, it is attained by persisting and steadfastly interacting with people on the basis of noble characteristics; developing self-restraint when dealing with transgressors, hypocrites and ill-mannered people; and repelling with that which is better and bearing with patience the evil of wrongdoers.
With the advent of 20th century, people started believing in the fact that there are no two individuals who are born exactly identical. When we say “identical”, it means both physical features and thought process. There was a time when people used to tell their children to “be like” their idol who could be their favourite player or athlete. However, now it has been universally accepted that asking someone to be somebody else is not only is an unrealistic and impractical demand, but also is a disastrous practice to follow, especially for children, as it stunts mental growth and creative thinking in people.Two individuals are born distinct from each other, and are different in their ways of thinking and interpreting the world. Asking them to be someone else could prevent the growth of their own distinct personality. While this factor of humans to be born unique and different gives us the wide variety of personality traits and approaches, it is the same factor that is the reason behind difference of opinions.
Social intelligence can be defined as the human ability of decoding the happenings of the world and responding to it likewise. This ability is exclusive to humans and distinguishes us from the rest of beings in the animal kingdom.Social Intelligence is also the capability to act wisely while maintaining human relations. It is markedly different from just intelligence, unlike what people used to think earlier. Over the years, it has been observed that many exceptionally intelligent people struggle a lot while maintaining a social life.

According to experts, there are three types of intelligences −Abstract Intelligence − It is the ability of applying knowledge in complex problem-solving by seeing the problem as a whole as opposed to checking only the individual, constituent parts. This is about understanding the non-verbal ideas and expressing them verbally. They are assessed as a part of Intelligence Testing.Mechanical Intelligence − It is the skill to understand the functioning of mechanisms and processes. Engineers and scientists have a typically high level of mechanical intelligence that enables them to understand how a machine works or what would make a specific machine work.Social Intelligence – This kind of intelligence is found in successful managers and marketing people. They know how to find their own in a group of people and they are always ready with proper responses to every query. In other words, they know how to be the people’s person.
Social Intelligence is also known as interpersonal intelligence because it is also the study of an individual’s ability to notice the distinctions between him and other people. As per this concept, a person’s own unique personality is a product of the person’s difference in knowledge on different areas as well as the level of social interactions he has with the people in his surroundings.Social intelligence skills are something anyone can learn. They don’t depend on genes or biology, although some people might be more susceptible to acquiring them than others. The social intelligence theory was first developed by psychologist Edward Thorndike all the way back in 1920.
Today we can say that social intelligence is the ability to read and properly react to social signals, monitor, understand, and manage one’s own emotions, and fit into a variety of social contexts.
As adults, most of us develop these skills to some extent. We may have a broad idea of what it means to be socially well-adept, but we differ in our ability to comply with the rules of social life and navigate them. The first signs of social intelligence in humans are visible as early as the 6th week of life. At 18 months of age, children can comprehend complex social cues and understand others’ intentions. As we grow older, our social environment becomes more complex and demanding, and it requires a sophisticated set of skills and abilities that for the majority of people don’t simply come naturally–they need to be taught. As adults, we become responsible and capable of acquiring new social skills, and can significantly benefit from doing so. Scientific research has proven time and time again that people with stronger social connections, and who are more optimistic and positive, tend to suffer less from mental health problems, experience less stress, and consequently have better physical health.
We live in a society and come in contact with people with different thoughts and personalities every day. While meeting these people with different social and psychological characteristics, we experience happiness, sorrow, misunderstandings, agreements, quarrels, and other different emotions. If we don’t know how to handle these feelings, we will tend to avoid those people who make us feel uncomfortable. That in turn, will make us appear unfriendly to those people, many of whom could be important people in our lives.
Booster to happy life: Steadfastness of heart and not being disturbed about the imaginary things that bad thoughts may bring to mind. For when a person gives in to his imagination and lets his mind be disturbed by these thoughts, such as fear of disease and the like, or anger and confusion stirred up by some grievous matter, or the expectation of bad things and the loss of good things, it will fill him with worries, distress, mental and physical illness and nervous breakdowns, which will have a bad effect on him and which causes a great deal of harm, as many people have seen. But when a person depends on Allah swt and puts his trust in Him, and does not give in to his imagination or let bad thoughts overwhelm him, and he relies on Allah swt and has hope of His bounty, this wards off his worries and distress, and relieves him of a great deal of mental and physical sickness. It gives indescribable strength, comfort and happiness to the heart. How many hospitals are filled with the mentally sick victims of illusions and harmful imagination; how often have these things had an effect upon the hearts of many strong people, let alone the weak ones; how often have they led to foolishness and insanity. It should be noted that your life will follow your train of thought. If your thoughts are of things that will bring you benefit in your spiritual or worldly affairs, then your life will be good and happy. Otherwise it will be the opposite.