My Quotient Theory….

For a while I have wondered about the various Q’s of our lives. Now, I am no sociologist or academic, but I am merely an observer and to a very good extent a participant. In fact, we all are. Most of my observations are from my own life and from folks I have interacted with in the past.

So what are these Q’s?

Most of us have heard of IQ – right? Intelligence Quotient? In fact, we are all blessed with a certain degree of IQ. 98% of people have an IQ in the range 70-130. You are considered to be a genius if your IQ is beyond 130. These numbers are based on standardized tests.

Apparently, the score represents your quantifiable intelligence. I don’t agree with this entirely. I think it is not possible to get a fix on anyone’s IQ perfectly just based on tests alone. Yes, there will always be those geniuses who will ace these tests and set a very high bar. These tests are standardized and are not situation based. So, it is quite possible, that someone could ace the test yet perform poorly in a situation. The same argument could be made with other standardized tests such as SAT, GMAT and so forth. Having a good score does not guarantee anything. Although, I would agree that someone who can consistently perform well in these tests does have the aptitude to do well. That said, standardized testing is a contentious subject with folks on both sides of the aisle on this one.

My point here is that the IQ score just captures a certain dimension one’s personality and ability to perform. There are other Q’s that we need to consider while evaluating a person or while evaluating oneself.

Business literature is rife with EQ – Emotional Quotient. A factor that is vital for managers. It’s hard to quantify emotion – right? How can you score anger? Or Love? Or Jealousy? EQ is a scoreless quotient and represents the ability of a manager or employee to stay calm and composed in trying business situations and yet deliver consistently. It is a much valued ‘Q’ that is built over time and spreads through word of mouth. Many executives and managers are hired based on their high EQ and their ability to deliver in trying conditions while at the same time maintaining the balance required.

Then, there is also the SQ – Social Quotient. How good are you socially? As we become a very interconnected world, the ability to forge social networks is indeed very valuable. Social networks often lead to business opportunities. Having a large network is one thing, but adding value to the network is another. You can only be friends with so many people at the same time – right? So, what value do you bring to the network? And at the same time, what value is this network adding to your life? What is your Social Quotient?

We then come across the FQ – Financial Quotient. Are you financially secure? What’s your quotient there? It is again a scoreless quotient, but from an absolute point of view you can objectively analyze your financial security and come up with a number. Is that number good enough for you? Or do you want a higher number? Most, would say that they want a very high number – right? Why wouldn’t you? But there are those who are really happy with what they have. You can get quite consumed while trying to improve your FQ, however you may choose to compute that. It could be that you are trying to keep up with the Joneses or trying to save up for your kids college education or your retirement. It is a very important Q in most people’s life. I am sure you’d agree.

CQ – Community Quotient. Very important, in my mind. What value are you adding to the society/community at large. While most of us do take a lot from society, how many of us give back? Is this important? Yes, indeed it is. Can we value this?

And the most important “Q” of all – HQ. HAPPINESS QUOTIENT! This is one is simple and measures our happiness. No standardized tests required. You know if you if are happy or not! None of the Q’s that I mention above will be possible without a strong foundational HQ. I believe that a good HQ is represented by three key elements – Body, Soul and Mind, the health of which does impact your HQ. And since everyone is different, a good score (relative, self-evaluated, standardized) in some Q’s can elevate one’s HQ. That would be for most of us, humble mortals. For those of us who are saints, I think their HQ is infinite and is independent of the Q’s I mention above or for that matter any Q.

I know that there are many more Q’s (Intimacy, Lifestyle, Spiritual, Wierdness, Fun, Athletic, Beauty etc) that we can mine. Each Q underscores a unique dimension in us. I believe that we are more than the sum total of all of these Q’s. While I say that, I also believe that we must cultivate and nurture these Q’s as in the end, it is the sum total of these Q’s that will matter rather than just one Q. The more I think about these Q’s, the more I am inclined to believe that our wisdom, maturity and eventually our happiness depends in some way, shape or form on these Q’s.

I was mentioning my “Q-theory” to a colleague the other day, and she surprised me by saying – “Are you talking about the Chakras?” In a way the Q’s are sort of Chakra’s, although the Chakra’s define the center of our body, mind and soul. And controlling or modulating our chakra’s results in a very high level of HQ – perhaps even the very hard to attain – “Infinite HQ”. I am not a philosopher, but I would imagine that every ancient culture or philosophy would have an equivalent of the Chakra’s or even my oblique ‘Q-Theory’.

No matter how you cut it, centering our Q’s or Chakra’s is essential to our enhancement and upliftment. Most of us are able to or want to focus on just a few Q’s and excel in that. Nothing wrong in that. But for total excellence we will need to pay attention to all of our Q’s and work on them diligently. Remember the end goal – a very strong HQ…….!

Would you agree?

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