Learning to identify our emotions and being able to handle them the proper way can be difficult, especially with age. However, when we have the proper guidance, we get the chance to develop our emotional intelligence, especially from a young age. That’s why, as parents, we need to make sure we are raising our kids in a way that we show them how to recognize their emotions and handle them in the best possible way. Here are five useful tips we can follow in order to help our kids develop their emotional intelligence, regardless of their age.
One of the very first steps we need to take in order to help our kids develop their emotional intelligence is becoming aware of their emotions without them needing to express how they feel. Being aware of our own emotions will help identify our kids’, making it easier for us to acknowledge their feelings. As a result, we will be able to take action in a positive way, avoiding having any conflict or confrontation that could arise and showing plenty of empathy.
Even when it might seem like it, we need to keep in mind that our kids’ emotions aren’t an inconvenience nor a challenge for us to overcome. On the contrary, we should see them as an opportunity to connect and strengthen our bond, as well as sharing some of our knowledge with them. When we coach them at a time of anger instead of reprimanding them, they learn that it is ok to feel certain emotions instead of suppressing them.
In order to help our kids become more emotionally intelligent, parents need to allow them to express their feelings in a way that they feel comfortable and supported. When they do, we also need to show them that we are listening, that we understand how they feel, and that we validate their emotions. This will create a safe and trusting environment in which expressing feelings is encouraged.
Letting our kids express their emotions is not the only way to help them become aware of their feelings, and we need to help them label them, too. When we teach our kids how to label their emotions and put a name to what their feeling, it is easier for them to understand them, too. This way, they can start working on strategies to manage these emotions in a positive way.
Lastly, a key element that will help our kids deal with their emotions positively is helping them to approach their feelings with a problem-solving perspective. We need to remember that, even when all emotions are valid and acceptable, all behaviors are not, and showing our kids how to set themselves goals and generate solutions for their problems will be a great way for them to cope with their feelings. After all, every emotion comes from a given situation, and in order to fix such situations, we need to identify what made it happen in the first place.