The School of Life is an organisation that helps people develop their emotional intelligence, to combat the belief that a lack of emotional intelligence is to blame for many problems within workplaces today.
The Institute for Health and Human Potential define emotional intelligence (EI) as “the ability to recognise, understand and manage our own emotions, as well as recognising, understanding and influencing the emotions of others.”
The School of Life’s classes, events and workshops are delivered through a mixture of lecture teaching, group interaction and conversation; focusing on equipping students with “the emotional skills required to thrive in a career”. Employers are increasingly demanding a high level of EI and The School’s emphasis is on teaching these (often untaught) ‘soft’ skills.
Classes last for a few hours and titles include ‘How to Identify your Career Potential’, ‘How to be Confident’ and ‘How to Fail’, while the ‘Finding a Fulfilling Job’ One Day Workshop builds on the content from these shorter classes.
For loads of detailed, thoughtful and inspiring free content, check The Book of Life – The School of Life’s blog featuring essays under the categories of Finding Work, Misemployment, Pleasures of Work and Sorrows of Work. The pieces are wide-ranging: from rationalising Sunday night blues, to our obsession with finding work we love, to the illusion of work/life balance.
This powerful quote explains our feelings of disappointment in our career shortfalls, taken from the results page after completing the Find a job You Can Love questionnaire.
“Without in any way revealing this, our media edits out billions of unremarkable lives and years or failure, rejection and frustration even in those who do achieve – in order to serve up a daily curated selection of peak career moments. Our perspective is imbalanced because we know our own struggles so well from the inside, and yet are exposed to apparently pain-free narratives of achievement on the outside.
“The solution is to find a saner picture of how many difficulties lie behind everything you would wish to emulate. You should not look, for example, at the masterpieces of art in a museum. You should go to the studio and there see the anguish, wrecked early versions and watermarks on the paper where the artist broke down and wept… The goal is to recognise the legitimacy and necessary role of failure, to allow ourselves to do things imperfectly for a very long time – as a price we cannot avoid paying for an opportunity one day, in many decades, to do something that others will consider a spontaneous success.”