Emotional intelligence and coping with stressful conditions: the case of Iranian midwives

02 July 2020
7 min read
Volume 28 · Issue 7



This study aimed to evaluate the relationship between emotional quotient (EQ) and coping with stress among midwives in Ahvaz, Iran.


This was a cross-sectional study involving (n=300) midwives employed in the university hospitals of Ahvaz, Iran. Midwives with an associate or higher degree in midwifery and with at least three years of service were recruited.


Task-oriented and avoidant areas had a positive significant correlation with intrapersonal, interpersonal, management, adaptability and general mood (p<0.001). There was a significant negative correlation between emotion-oriented areas and all domains of EQ (p<001). EQ could predict more than 90% of midwives' ability for coping with stress.


The results of this study showed that there is a positive correlation of task-oriented and avoidant areas with all domains of EQ. There was also a significant negative correlation between emotion-oriented areas and all domains of EQ.

Emotional quotient (EQ) – or emotional intelligence – means controlling the internal emotions to reduce stress and to have a positive relationship and be able to communicate with other people (Segal et al, 2019). In other words, EQ refers to how we categorise and control our emotions, as well as how we respond to the emotions and feelings of others. EQ contains five components, namely self-awareness, self-regulation, social skills, empathy and motivation (Craig, 2020).

Nowadays, EQ is more important than intelligence quotient (IQ) for success because with EQ, people can receive signals from others correctly and act in a timely manner (Bressert, 2018). Cotrus et al (2012) believe that 80% of people's success depends on EQ, with IQ only accounting for 20% of their success. In a stressful situation, EQ helps people to easily adapt to the situation and even recover faster (Lea et al, 2019). Tafazoli et al (2012) found that EQ is one of the most important factors in careers, like midwifery, that deal with emergency situations. A study by Rakhshani et al (2018) showed that there was a significant negative relationship between EQ and job stress. A study by Miri et al (2013) on medical students, including midwifery students showed that there was no significant relationship between EQ scores and educational stress but there was a significant relationship between EQ and domains of academic stress, including personal favorites, reaction to stress and performance in stressful situations.

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