Emotional intelligence is the ability to understand and control our emotions. It allows us to interpret our own feelings, as well as the feelings of those around us. It’s important to learn how to use emotional intelligence from a young age, so we can interact with others with confidence, and be comfortable with ourselves. To help your kids develop and improve emotional intelligence, we’re going to give you a list of 11 tips to help your child develop their emotional intelligence.
Tips for developing emotional intelligence
1. Help them express their emotions
Many times, children don’t know how to control their emotions and they end up lashing out and yelling. It’s important that we teach them other ways to express their emotions, and that it is better to talk things through than to throw a tantrum.
Help them learn how to better express themselves. Maybe have them write in a journal, sing a song, hit a pillow, or draw. If they’re able to express their emotions, they’ll have a better possibility of understanding other people’s emotions.
2. Show them how to set goals
Help your children make their own goals and teach them to be responsible to be able to reach them.
3. Cultivate empathy
Doing this requires lots of questions on your part. Make them think about other people’s feelings. Ask them things like “why do you think your sister is sad?” or, “Do you think this would make mom happy?”
4. Develop good communication
It’s important to teach children to express themselves and ask when they don’t understand something. Learning to talk about things is a basic pillar in childhood education.
5. Control their anger
Children need love and affection until they reach 18 months. This will give them a sense of safety and help them adapt to their environment, control themselves and their fears. You should know, however, that after 6 months they will start developing emotions like rage, which is why it is so important to teach them to control their actions and correct their bad behavior. It is important to establish limits and talk to your child about how to control their anger.
6. Teach them how to recognize their emotions
Children start to interact more openly when they’re about 2 years old. This is when it becomes really important that they are able to recognize basic emotions, like happiness and anger. To do this, you can show them pictures or drawings of faces, and ask them to identify what emotions each face is showing. This will improve their empathy and help them relate to others.
7. Teach them how to listen
Make your children learn to listen without interrupting when others are talking. Teach them active listening, talking to them calmly and asking them if they understood what you said.
8. Show them secondary actions
Once a child reaches 10, they start to experience secondary emotions, like embarrassment and love. You need to be open and talk about these things to keep an open relationship between parents and children.
9. Try to keep the dialogue democratic
You have to teach your children to suck it up and admit when someone else was right. Learning how to get along with others is very important for both family and adult lives.
10. Try to get them interested in other people
Get them to think about other people and what they may be feeling. Try to make them interested in their family members so that they will learn how to be empathetic.
11. Make sure they are comfortable expressing their emotions
You have to make sure that the children know they can talk about their feelings and what’s bothering them. This will help them do better in school and excel in their adult life.