How can we teach emotional intelligence to our kids? This is perhaps the most frequently asked question by parents. Indeed, emotional intelligence development is one of the most important aspects of parenting. In today’s fast-paced world, it is not only necessary to develop emotional intelligence in adults but also in children.
According to a survey, over 11 percent of children suffer from mood disorders. Moreover, in a study, it was found that kids who have emotionally sensitive parents tend to have better emotional intelligence. Notably, emotional intelligence development plays a major role in academic performance, building resilience, and healthy relationships.
While it may require some effort to find effective ways to raise emotionally intelligent kids, it’s all worth it to build a better future for them. Read below this article to explore what emotional intelligence is and some of the best ways to foster this valuable skill in your child.
What is emotional intelligence?
It’s common for both adults and kids to run high on emotions, make impulsive choices, or speak harsh words as a consequence. This is where emotional intelligence comes in!
Emotional intelligence simply means having the skills to understand and recognize emotions. Furthermore, this lifelong skill includes expressing and regulating emotions, as well as responding empathetically to others’ emotions. This skill is particularly necessary for kids’ overall social development. Moreover, this skill plays a great role when dealing with stressful and challenging situations.
In kids, emotional intelligence development includes recognizing emotions either through facial expressions or body language, understanding emotion-linked actions, conveying their feelings, empathizing with others, and learning how to react calmly even during stressful situations.
6 Ways to Promote Emotional Intelligence in Kids
Start by creating a safe environment at home where your kids are able to express their emotions freely. Now, there are several ways in which you could instill emotional intelligence in your kids. From encouraging positive behavior to appreciating your kids for their efforts, read below to discover six effective ways to raise emotionally intelligent children.
1. Encourage positive behaviour
Encouraging positive behaviors is one of the most important aspects when it comes to emotional intelligence development in kids. Make your child learn to show their emotions, resolve any challenges that they might face with patience and calmness, and listen actively to others. It is equally important to build a healthy relationship with your child so they’re able to express themselves in front of you openly.
2. Encourage expressing emotions
Self-recognition and self-analysis are important parts of the social development of a child. In this context, self-expression contributes to a major portion of self-awareness. Therefore, parents must encourage their little ones to express their feelings by offering them a safe environment and a shoulder to lean on. This way, they will not only learn to regulate their emotions but will also develop understanding and empathy in them.
3. Avoid Criticising
Criticism is often the main reason why a parent-child relationship is damaged. Thus, it is important to understand how your criticism could affect the emotions of your child. Therefore, avoid criticizing or labeling your kid to prevent any feelings of shame that might result as a consequence. Not only does it hamper the productivity of a child, but it also affects their behavior in the long run.
4. Teaching Empathy
One of the most effective ways for emotional intelligence development in a child is teaching empathy and to listen to them attentively without judging them whenever they try to express their feelings. Furthermore, empathizing with your little one will reassure them that you support them and that he feels heard. Moreover, it will deepen trust in your parent-child relationship. Make them understand that expressing emotions is a normal part of everyone’s life. It is important that you ensure you’re being patient all this time.
5. Play EQ-promoting games.
There are hundreds of child games, such as ‘Emotion Charades,’ ‘Which Emotion Am I,’ and ‘Feelings Bingo’, that are recognized as EQ-promoting games. Not only do these games help kids recognize various emotions, but they also help them understand the importance of emotional expressions. Moreover, these games are built in such a way that they help kids learn to empathize with others by making them understand how others might be feeling.
6. Show Appreciation
Raising kids is indeed an uphill battle. In this journey, it is important to recognize the little efforts of your kids and show appreciation for their diligence and progress. These little appreciations will give them the confidence and motivation they need to do greater things in life. You might even surprise them with little gifts whenever they do something good.
In conclusion, raising an emotionally intelligent child takes time and effort. With little guidance and understanding, you can easily develop the skills you need for the life ahead. Providing a safe environment and appreciating them for little things are the very basics you could begin with. It’s never too late to start something. Explore the above article to find some of the most effective ways of developing EQ in your kids.