Emotional IQ


Fears and Phobias

  • Napoleon was afraid of horses and the color white. Therefore, numerous paintings depicting the emperor straddling a white horse are obviously just the imagination of artists. The European conqueror basically would lose his mind every time he saw these two fears combined, as in an image of a white horse.
  • Some people say that Michael Jackson was terrified of planes and helicopters. When organizers were planning his concerts in London (which never ended up taking place) he asked them to transfer him to venues on a speed boat. He needed it because besides his fear of flights, he was also afraid of traffic jams.
  • King Charles VI of France was afraid he could be easily injured. The ruler, called Charles the Mad, sometimes believed that he was made of glass; in order to protect himself the king fortified his clothes with iron bars.
  • Nikolai Gogol and Edgar Allan Poe were both afraid to fall into a lethargic sleep and be buried alive, a fear otherwise known as taphephobia. Gogol had such a terrible case of taphephobia that he told his friends to bury him only if they noticed actual signs of his body’s decomposition. The German composer Giacomo Meyerbeer suffered from the same fear. However, his phobia was even worse than that of Gogol. Meyerbeer ordered that his body be kept in bed for four days and to have bells tied to his arms and legs in case he woke up so that everybody could hear him! Four days later his veins were to be pierced to check if he was indeed dead; this routine was adhered to after his death.
  • Rumor has it that Johnny Depp is afraid of clowns that wear make-up. He is also scared of anyone who wears so much make-up that it’s impossible to recognize them.
  • Even the legendary king of suspense Alfred Hitchcock, who is renowned for his horror movies, suffered from phobias. The famous director was afraid of oval objects and became anxious whenever he was served an egg for breakfast.
  • And what do the following people have in common: Napoleon Bonaparte, Alexander III of Macedon, Julius Cesar, Genghis Khan, Benito Mussolini, and Adolf Hitler? They all had ailurophobia or the fear of cats.

Fear in Dangerous Situations Releases Hidden Body Resources

  • When a furious bull began chasing after an old man, he basically leaped over 6 foot tall fence, even though he had never been a sportsman.
  • A polar pilot was fixing his plane when he suddenly noticed a polar bear nudging his back. In a split-second the pilot was standing on the plane wing 6 feet above the ground. Later the pilot couldn’t explain how he managed to do it.
  • A child became stuck under a wheel of a car and his mother was able to lift the car on her own, not paying attention to how much it weighed.
  • In St Petersburg, a 2-year old child almost fell out of a 7th story window. His mother was able to barely catch him with one hand; she used her other hand to hold on to a lodged brick. Moreover, she was holding on to the brick with only her index and middle fingers, but with a “stranglehold” grip. When the woman was being escorted to safety, rescuers could only release her grip through great effort. It took them several hours to calm the woman down and persuade her to let go of her child.
  • Once, while during a flight, a bolt became stuck under a pedal in the plane cockpit causing the pilot to lose control over the aircraft. To save his life as well as the lives of the crew and passengers the pilot pushed the pedal so hard that it was able to cut off the bolt, thus freeing up the pedal.


Many famous people suffer from sorrow and depression.

King David described the symptoms of depression in the Bible, “I am troubled; I am bowed down greatly; I go mourning all the day long... I am feeble and sore broken: I have roared by reason of the disquietness of my heart... My heart pants, my strength fails me: as for the light of my eyes, it also is gone from me.”

Nikolai Gogol wrote, “Hanging myself or drowning myself seemed to me somehow like a medicine or relief.”

“I feel tired and beaten down to such a degree that I can hardly keep from crying from morning to night... The faces of friends irritate me... Daily conversations, sleeping in the same bed, my own voice, my face, its reflection in the mirror...” — opined Guy de Maupassant.

Madonna never shows her feelings but she often suffers from depression. When she was young her escape was a new romantic fling — by all means with a young man and preferably one without any strings attached. Now, as rumor has it, her method to fight depression is yoga.

Kylie Minogue suffered from depression for a while, but a very unusual method helped her to fight the illness: Kylie got rid of all photos in which she DIDN’T smile. She also banished herself from reading bad news and rehearsed a wide smile in front of the mirror.

Singer Keisha Buchanan once said, “With depression you can go in and out of it and not really know whether it’s still there or not. Sometimes I’d find myself bursting into tears for no reason.”

Musician Ben Moody has said, “I was horribly depressed, and I felt like I had failed as a band leader, a professional, as a person.”

Suffering Can Give One Energy and Strength


It is a well-known fact that Alexander Pushkin had the most creative moment of his career during the Boldinskaya Osyen (Summer at Boldino), when the poet was suffering from a forced separation from his fiancee Nataliya Goncharova. During this brief period he wrote many masterpieces.

While the American O. Henry was in prison for embezzlement he decided to try writing novels in order to earn money for his beloved daughter. That is how he became a worldwide famous writer.

Feelings and principles


People of principle may consider their beliefs stronger than their feelings. A good example of this is Vissarion Belinsky, who couldn’t hate someone who hurt or offended him, but was capable of hating a person for a different point of view or flaws that he didn’t see in himself. Nikolai Gogol wrote about his conservative beliefs in the book “Selected Passages from Correspondence with Friends” and Belinsky, at death’s door, responded, “I would hate you less if you tried to kill me rather than wrote these shameful lines ... It’s not about my or your personality, but about something that is higher than not just me but you as well: it’s about the truth, it’s about Russian society, it’s about Russia.”

Sense of Humor


At a 1912 dinner party at the Churchill family estate, Blenheim Palace, American socialite Lady Astor became annoyed with Winston Churchill as he was pontificating on a certain topic. As Lady Astor could not bear to listen to his ranting anymore she yelled:

“Winston, if you were my husband, I’d put poison in your coffee.”

Without missing a beat the calm descendant of the Dukes of Marlborough sustained a pause, looked at the angry woman with sympathy and said:

“Nancy, if you were my wife, I’d drink it.”

A burst of laughter from the crowd meant he had achieved victory with the help of a joke.



“Pride shouldn’t be suppressed or weakened; it should be directed at the worthy aims.” (Helvetius)

“The pride of the lower class is in talking about themselves; the pride of the upper class is in not talking about themselves at all.” (Voltaire)

“Most of all, we are proud of something we don’t own.” (Ryunosuke Akutagawa)



“Joy, which makes a person more sensitive to every bit of his heart, makes the body stronger.” (Ivan Pavlov)

“Joy is not found in what surrounds us but our attitude to our surroundings.” (Francois de La Rochefoucauld)

“The one who knows what to be happy about has reached a height.” (Seneca)

“We get to know a person better not because of what he knows but by what makes him happy.” (Rabindranath Tagore)

“It’s impossible to follow the leader without admiring him. Delight is a much stronger feeling than the sense of power.” (Augusto Cury)


“You can’t do anything without real love and passion.” (Ivan Pavlov)

“Love is the most proven way to overcome the feeling of shame.” (Sigmund Freud)

“There is no such wild beast that wouldn’t respond to kindness.” (Desiderius Erasmus ) <h3<Surprise


“The secret to humor is surprise.” (Aristotle)

“The one who surprised everyone is the victor.” (A.V. Suvorov)

“Not being surprised by anything is, of course, a sign of foolishness, not intellect.” (Fyodor Dostoyevsky)



“If geometrical axioms interested people, they would have been refuted.” (Thomas Hobbes)

“If you lose interest in everything, you lose your memory.” (Goethe)

“Dioxippus the Athenian, an Olympic victor in Wrestling, was driving through Athens, according to the custom of wrestlers. The multitude flocked together, and crowded to behold him. Amongst these a woman of extraordinary beauty came to see the show. Dioxippus beholding her, was immediately overcome with her beauty, and looked fixedly upon her, and turned his head back, often changing colour, whereby he was plainly detected by the people to be taken extraordinarily with the woman. But Diogenes the Sinopean did chiefly reprehend his passion thus: ‘Behold, said he, your great wrestler with his neck writhed about by a girl.’” (Claudius Aelianus)

“One Egyptian neatly answered the question why he covered his burden from all sides. He said, ‘So that nobody knew why!’” (Plutarch)


“Disgust often comes after pleasure but it also often precedes it.” (Coco Chanel)

“If we physiologically can’t stand something from the very beginning and feel disgust towards it, it is often the reflection of our own image.” (Haruki Murakami)

“Disgust to dirt can be so great that it will prevent us from being clean.” (Friedrich Nietzsche)



“Holding on to anger is like grasping a hot coal with the intent of throwing it at someone else; you are the one who gets burned.” (Buddha)

“Anger is always a bad advisor.” (Emile Zola)

“We are boiling at different temperatures.” (Ralph Waldo Emerson)

“Delay is never as apt as when it comes to anger.” (Publilius Syrus)

“Beware of anger of a patient person.” (John Dryden)

“Anger inflames fantasies so hard that one may get burn.t” (D. Halifax)

“It is he who is in the wrong who first gets angry.” (William Penn)



“Funny people do more silly things than sad people, but sad people do bigger silly things” (E.H. Kleist)

“There is some satisfaction in sadness, especially if you can cry on your friend’s shoulder — he being the one who will praise you for your tears or will forgive you for them” (Pliny the Younger)

“Sadness is sufficient enough on its own but it gets the real pleasure you need to share it with others” (Mark Twain)

“Sadness is like a child: it grows faster if you cherish it” (Caroline Holland)

“The saddest drink is a cup of a weak tea” (Katherine Mansfield)

“It’s sad when people hiss you off in the same tune” (Stanislaw Jerzy Lec)



“We should be careful to get out of an experience only the wisdom that is in it — and stop there; lest we be like the cat that sits down on a hot stove lid. She will never sit down on a hot stove lid again — and that is well; but also she will never sit down on a cold one anymore.” (Mark Twain)

“We hope approximately but we fear certainly” (Paul Valery)

“Nothing is terrible except fear itself” (Francis Bacon)

“When you give in to the fear of terror, you start to feel the terror of fear” (Pierre Beaumarchais)

“Sometimes people become brave out of fear” (Ovid)

"Fear is as contagious as a running nose, and each time it turns singular into plural (Goethe)