How to Promote Children's Emotional Intelligence
Emotional intelligence is the ability to recognize, appreciate and properly value our emotions and those of others, so that our actions can be in line with the emotions we feel.
In this article we’ll explain how you can help your children become more emotionally intelligent and conscious.
What is emotional intelligence?
Many scientific studies have concluded that the skills and abilities necessary for success in life cannot be measured with any intelligence tests.
A brilliant brain and a high IQ don’t do us much good if we don’t understand the emotions of others and aren’t empathetic.
Most parents are aware that their children’s education is closely linked to a proper development of their emotions. Family relationships play a key role in the whole family’s emotional well-being.
On the other hand, relationships can also cause conflict and discomfort, creating negative emotions that affect the whole family.
There is a correlation between proper emotional development and professional academic development
A peaceful, calm, harmonious and happy home will be a perfect environment for your child to channel their emotions.
Parents are role models for their children. Therefore, parents must first be conscious of their own emotions – meaning they should be aware of the emotions they feel, as well as their causes and possible consequences.
How can we help our children to be emotionally intelligent?
To help our children manage their emotions correctly, we must teach them to verbalize their emotions starting from childhood. It is good to teach them to connect with themselves, so that they can better understand how they feel and can then express it.
Any situation or time of day can be an opportunity for them to practice and develop their own emotional awareness.
It is also important that they pay attention to their emotions, whether they are positive, such as when they are happy, or negative, when they feel sadness or anger. Then they can identify and label them.
They should also try to look for the cause of that emotion, in order to figure out what has led to it and, more importantly, why it makes them feel that way. In short, that they become more emotionally aware on their own.
When it comes to negative emotions, teach your children to look for alternatives to these emotions. For example, if something has made them angry, allow them to see that in the same situation they can respond in many different ways and we don’t always make the best decision.
In many cases, emotions are responsible for our thoughts and actions, so learning about them and reacting to them can help us to be empathetic and be more flexible.
Characteristics of Emotionally Intelligent Parents
- They have the physical and mental tools of self-control.
- They rely on the facts first, rather than prejudices. First impressions aren’t everything.
- They have the ability to see the good side of things, i.e. to transform the negative into positive.
- They know how to take responsibility for their actions and learn from their mistakes.
- They are able to set limits and be firm if necessary.
- They’re open to meeting new people.
How can you work on emotional education with your child?
Starting at a very young age, our children are exposed to numerous emotions and feelings that they need to learn to perceive in a positive way in order to behave properly.
This is to ensure that that they have good social skills and can actively participate in society, and this is reflected in their personal satisfaction.
Here are some of the things you will need to work on with your child to promote the development of emotional intelligence:
- Create a space in which they can speak and listen openly and actively.
- Replace closed questions with open questions.
- Applaud your children’s achievements and the effort behind them.
- Don’t label inappropriate behaviors.
- Encourage affection.
Help Them Through Difficult Times
- Make them feel safe and calm.
Help Them Manage Their Emotions
- Help them face a situation and look for a solution together.
- Approach conflicts in such a way that your child can learn from them.
Remember that promoting your child’s emotional intelligence will not only help you to have a good relationship and communication at home, but it will also allow them to develop naturally in the future, make their own decisions and act accordingly.
All cited sources were thoroughly reviewed by our team to ensure their quality, reliability, currency, and validity. The bibliography of this article was considered reliable and of academic or scientific accuracy.
- Fernández-Berrocal, P., & Ruiz Aranda, D. (2018). La Inteligencia emocional en la Educación. Electronic Journal of Research in Education Psychology. https://doi.org/10.25115/ejrep.v6i15.1289
- Trujillo, M., & Rivas, L. (2005). Orígenes, evolución y modelos de inteligencia emocional. INNOVAR, Revista de Ciencias Administrativas y Sociales. Universidad Nacional de Colombia. https://doi.org/10.15446/innovar
- Velasco Bernal, J. J. (2016). LA INTELIGENCIA EMOCIONAL. Industrial Data. https://doi.org/10.15381/idata.v4i1.6677