Do you want to raise a happy and successful child?
If so, emotional intelligence is key. Emotionally intelligent children can better regulate their emotions, navigate relationships, and achieve success in life.
In this post, we will discuss the 8 most effective ways to raise an emotionally intelligent child. Follow these tips, and your child will be sure to thrive.
Tip #01: Be a Good Role Model
If you want your child to be emotionally intelligent, it is vital that you set the example.
Children learn by watching and imitating their parents. If you are stressed out, angry, or dismissive towards your child, they will likely mirror these behaviors.
If you yell all the time when trying to get your kids to listen, then please don’t be surprised when your kid starts a screaming match as well.
Instead, try to be patient and positive when interacting with your child. This will teach them how to manage their emotions effectively.
Tip #02: Encourage Them to Express Their Feelings
It would be best to create an environment where your child feels comfortable expressing their emotions. When they are upset, offer them words of comfort and understanding. Let them know that it is okay to feel sad, angry, or frustrated.
Here are a few examples of words of comfort you can use on your child.
- “I’m sorry that you’re feeling upset. Do you want to talk about what’s going on?”
- “It sounds like you’re feeling really angry right now. Can you tell me more about what happened?”
- “I can see that you’re frustrated. Let’s take a break and try again later.”
Tip #03: Refrain From Telling Your Child How They Should Feel About a Situation
As parents, it’s our role to protect our children. And it’s easy for us to try and prevent them from experiencing negative feelings like sadness, anger, frustration, and the like. But when we do this, we prevent them from developing emotional intelligence.
We must allow our children to experience a full range of emotions to learn how to deal with them effectively.
So, instead of telling your child, “There’s nothing to be angry about.” Try using a comfort phrase like this instead, “I can see that you’re really angry about what happened. It’s okay to feel that way. Let’s talk about it.”
Tip #04: Help Them Put Their Feelings into Words
Many children have a hard time identifying and expressing their emotions. As a result, they may act out in aggressive or destructive ways.
To help your child better understand their feelings, you must help them put their feelings into words.
One way to do this is to offer them a feeling word when experiencing a strong emotion. For example, if your child is throwing a tantrum, you can say, “It looks like you’re feeling outraged right now. Can you tell me more about what happened?” This will help them to better understand and articulate their feelings.
You can teach them to label their feelings by using a feelings chart. This is a great tool to help children identify and express their emotions.
Below is a great example of a feelings chart you can pin on a wall in your house.
Tip # 05: Help Them Develop coping skills
It’s important to teach your child how to cope with their emotions in a healthy way. This will help them to avoid acting out in destructive or harmful ways.
One way to do this is to teach them deep breathing exercises to help calm and focus their mind.
Another tremendous coping technique is to introduce a comfort object. Your choice of comfort object depends on the age and maturity of the child, but it can be anything from a stuffed animal, a cozy blanket, or a toy they love.
Whenever your kid feels upset, worried, or sad, they can hold or cuddle their comfort object.
What if my child gets physical when they’re upset? How can I help my child calm down when upset?
If your child gets aggressive when upset, by either kicking, hitting, or even biting, it’s wise to get them an item they can hit when they’re angry. You can get them a pillow they can hit or better yet have your child run outside to release all that pent-up anger.
Tip #06: Be Patient When Teaching Them
It’s important to be patient when teaching your child about emotional intelligence. They are still learning, and it will take time to master the skills.
Don’t get discouraged if they don’t seem to be getting it right away. Just keep working with them, and eventually, they will get it.
Tip #07: Help Them Develop Empathy for Others
One of the critical benefits of emotional intelligence is the ability to empathize with others. When children can put themselves in someone else’s shoes, they can better understand and empathize with them.
One way to help your child develop empathy is to encourage them to play games that involve role-playing or read to them stories about characters experiencing different emotions.
You can ask your child how they would feel if they were in the same situation as the characters in the story or even a movie. This way, they can understand how others feel and be empathetic.
Tip #08: Encourage Them to Be Assertive
It’s important that kids learn to be assertive and demonstrate self-assured behavior. Not only will this model emotional intelligence, but it will significantly boost their self-esteem.
Teaching your child to be assertive means showing them how to express their needs and wants respectfully, including saying no when the situation demands it. Also, your child will be able to stand for themselves against bullies, which, unfortunately, is a situation they’ll likely find themselves in at some point.
But, first, how do you teach your child assertiveness?
Simple. Teach them by example.
- If someone treats you badly or rudely, tell them off, respectfully, right there and then.
- When you don’t feel like doing something or going somewhere, proudly day No without apologizing and with zero ounces of guilt.
- Maintain eye contact with your child when talking to them
- Try and not interrupt your kid when they are talking to you. And I know this is a hard one, but we’re all about the possibilities here, so give it a try.
- And lastly, respect your child’s interest and opinion. Don’t force them to join a swimming class when it’s evident from their endless cartwheels, high energy, good balance, and incredible coordination that they should be in gymnastics.
All the above are excellent ways to show your child how to be assertive and self-confident. Remember, kids learn by example, so if you want your child to be self-confident, you better lead by example, Mama!
Tip #09: Help Them Develop a Strong Self-Image
A strong self-image is essential for emotional intelligence. When children feel good about themselves, they are more likely to take risks and explore new things. They will also be more resilient in the face of adversity.
One way to help your child develop a strong self-image is to praise them when they do something well. This will help them to feel good about themselves and their abilities. Another way is to encourage them to try new things. This will help them to explore their interests and develop new skills.
Finally, you can provide them with opportunities to help others. This will teach them that they can make a difference in the world.
How to Raise an Emotionally Intelligent Child: 9 Proven Strategies
So there you have it, the nine most effective ways to raise an emotionally intelligent child. I hope you found this post helpful and that you’ll start using some of these tips with your own child.
Do you have any tips on how to raise an emotionally intelligent child?
Please share them in the comments below. Thanks for reading!