HOW TO HELP YOUR CHILD SUCCEED IN SCHOOL (2)
How to Raise an Emotionally Intelligent Child
Since Emotional Intelligence appears to be a key’s predictor in your child’s ability to make suitable peer relationships, get along at home, develop a well-balanced outlook of life, and to reach his academic potential at school. As a parent, you play a crucial role in helping your child building emotional intelligence. Regardless of his personality your child can have his EQ nurtured and supported through his own development.
Here are 4 ways to help your child develop his EQ:
1. Cultivate Empathy. Empathy is the foundation of emotional intelligence as it is essential to understand your child and to connect with him. Empathizing means you see the situation from your child’s perspective, not that you agree with him. Once you show empathy, then you can intervene so that your child feels understood. You also help him reflect on his own experience and what triggers his feelings.
2. Help your child identify his own emotions. When he is feeling upset or discouraged, ask him to describe what he is feeling and where he experiences the physical sensations in his body. He may write it down or even draw it. The more you practice with your child, the more he will be in touch with his emotions and knows what it feels to be sad or angry. Please do not forget to do it too with the “positive” emotions such as happiness.
3. Model Emotional Intelligence. As with any other parenting skills, the most important element is role modeling your message to your child. If you want to encourage your child to develop emotional intelligence then start by regulating your own emotions. Your child learns emotional regulation from you. What he sees you do is what he will do. Do you start snapping at others when you’re under stress? Have minor tantrums when things go wrong? So will he. Can you stay calm when your child does something you don’t like? Do you empathize when feelings are expressed? So will he.
4. Teach Problem Solving. By acknowledging your child’s strong emotions, then he will feel that they are understood and accepted. Thus, these emotions often lose their charge and start to dissipate. The problem solving process can then begin. If your child needs help to brainstorm solutions, help him. If not, leave him figure out on his own how to solve the problem. This will boost his self-confidence.
If your child builds a high EQ, he will do better in school, will be more cooperative with parents, will choose healthy friends, and be less likely to engage in risky behaviors. Research shows that children who do not develop Emotional Intelligence are more likely to “self-medicate” with drugs and alcohol, to act impulsively in anger, to become pregnant as teenagers, to develop eating disorders, and to engage in delinquent behaviors.
As a parent and a therapist, I want to offer some tips on how to raise happy and healthy kids. Please feel free to comment on my posts.