Emotion coaching is the talk of the town these days and rightly so – it helps children deal with their emotions at a very early stage of their lives. It’s natural that all parents want to protect their kids, but it’s simply not possible – there will always be grief, sadness, anger, anxiety, and all kinds of emotions that are inherent parts of every life. So how can you use emotion coaching with your children to help them deal with everything they may experience?
- Know emotions, both yours and theirs
If you want your children to know and understand feelings, you have to start with yourself. There should never be judgment nor criticism for whatever someone may feel – emotions are not always rational and we should accept that. Pay attention to your children – see if they don’t hide their emotions and help them understand that there’s nothing to be ashamed of.
- Communicate with your children
Though some methods may recommend ignoring certain behaviours, emotion coaching is all about talking and instructions. Even when your children are throwing tantrums, you should not turn away. Most times when kids get so irritated and frustrated, they are simply having problems with expressing their feelings; help them with that. You won’t fix it permanently but your children ought to know that these emotions are normal and can be verbalized.
Don’t ever dismiss your children, don’t patronize them and don’t laugh if they don’t. The most important part of emotion coaching is listening. You can’t understand them if you don’t hear them. If it’s a big problem for them, it should be a big problem for you (even if it wouldn’t be normally).
- Resolve problems
Help them deal with their feelings. For example, music is a popular way to let off some steam. Yantzee may be a good way to start, especially with younger children. Show them your own methods – doing it together may also help you bond.
To know more about spending time with your children, check out this infographic: