I have passionately wondered the rationale behind the government’s endeavor of employing guidance/life skills teachers in most public schools in Namibia. And in the absence of financial resources, I wondered if we can expand the scope of these guidance/ life skills teachers to cover other areas of concern. More than what is currently taught, introduce subject matters such as emotional intelligence. More than the intellectual competency in various fields of studies I think, what set us aside from the animal kingdom as superior beings is our ability possess emotional intelligence. What is more worrisome is the current requirement of a guidance/ life skills teacher is a mere teaching qualification attached there unto. I strongly believe that the requirement should be for those possessing qualification in human behavior studies and not just educational degrees.
With the morals decayin our modern society we turn to teachers in our public schools to introduce curriculum based subjects that speaks to the issue at hand. Notwithstanding the importance of family or church as unit in the society, I primarily want to focus on the schools as a platform that groups a number of these individuals from various background as an effective means of achieving the ends. What is this emotional intelligence?And why is emotional intelligence an issue of concern for us?Why is the school the best platform?
Emotional intelligence speaks of the capability of individuals to recognize their own emotions and those of others, discern between different feelings and label them appropriately, use emotional information to guide thinking and behavior, and manage and/or adjust emotions to adapt to environments or achieve one’s goal(s). I am more conceived that the gruesome acts of violence against women from former lovers speaks volumes of a society whose men cannot manage anger or the disappointment of ended intimate relationship. We have cultural practices that slaves men to disregard certain emotions as too feminine to express whilst promoting certain emotions as more appropriate for men. More so, anger. We live in a world that has us fixated on the height of pleasure all the time without the worries of the imbalance of such. Those who find it hard to control impulses/ urges even sexual urges get carried away. The spread of STIs then becomes a behavioral problem that is as a result of uncontrolled sexual urges.
Emotions are neither feminine nor masculine they are just emotions. Emotions are what makes us human, and a healthy human being should inhabit and express all emotions proportionally. The inability to effectively manage anger has robbed most men in Namibia abilities to resolve conflict situations, disappointments and often turning to violence as solutions. I submit to you, that men must learn how to manage anger as an emotion if we want to deal with the so-called passion crimes. Emotions can be managed. Once the information behind the emotion is gathered and understood, it can be regulated and managed.
If we are unpack the manner in which feelings come about, the cognitive-behavioral approach states that emotions are as a result of thinking. We think, therefore we feel. And if we are to have help men to address their mismanagement of emotions then and even so anger, we should help our young men to draw the link between the power of thought and emotions. Empower them with psychological skills to management these emotions.
Why the school is a better platform to address the matter lies in the nature of the institution. It’s a learning set up. Not all parents are equipped with the knowledge of how to train children to handle emotions therefore, whilst they come and acquire knowledge we should eagerly desire to not only impact knowledge of various subject matters and neglect the emotional aspect of these individuals. For they will grow to become engineers, scientists, lawyers, teachers who cannot manage their emotions effectively.
Tjiuovioje Tom Kahimise
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