Emotional education is the key to the present and future well-being of children. In recent decades, one concept that has burst into the field of psychology, both clinical, professional, educational, and athletic, is emotional intelligence.
- Emotional intelligence has been shown to have many benefits, as we explained in our article “The 10 Benefits of Emotional Intelligence”
How to educate for emotional intelligence
In the following lines, we offer a series of strategies and tips for the emotional education of children.
1. Learn that you can’t always have what you want
One of the great conflicts that we humans encounter frequently is learning to control our impulses. Emotional intelligence is essential for us to learn to manage; however, they must first be identifiable.
That’s why it’s important to start teaching them from a young age that they can’t always have what they want.. For example, if possible, it is necessary to explain to them the consequences of their actions. With this type of action, self-control is encouraged.
2. Let them express their emotions
Some adults think that children are too young to understand certain things. But already at an early age we need to trust our children and allow them to freely express themselves and their emotions. If we give them a comforting space so that they can trust their feelings, we will give them a positive message that they can apply in other settings, for example at school.
3. Create a space for dialogue
It is not necessary to treat children like adults, but it is necessary to encourage dialogue, so that they learn at an early age. It is important that children grow up with the dialogue skills necessary to become people capable of negotiating and making deals with other people. In the adult world, interpersonal relationships are important for achieving mental and emotional well-being.
4. Work on empathy
Empathy – that is, putting yourself in the other person’s shoes – is also one of the most important parts of emotional intelligence. and therefore should be taught when children are small. This is also important to ensure that the above point is respected, so that they can get along and come to an agreement democratically. Empathy is the key for them to put aside their egocentricity.
5. Teach him to be motivated
Self-motivation is also essential in emotional intelligence, but it is common for many people, when faced with failure, to become pessimistic. Make her understand that failures are opportunities for growth and stimulating them in this regard at an early age is essential for them to become optimistic people.
6. Use the example
Sometimes it is easy to tell others what to do, but especially when it comes to educating a child, we must be a good example for him. This is a key point, because parents are role models for their children, which must not be forgotten. This is another of the practical keys to emotional education.
7. Let them learn active listening
Listening is not the same as hearing. We can hear what someone is saying to us but think about our turn in conversation without the other person having finished theirs, or we can listen with all five senses, that is, actively listening. When someone communicates with us, they not only express what they are saying in words, but also speak their non-verbal language and emotions. It is essential to pay attention to it in order to communicate fully with other people.
- If you want to teach a child to develop active listening, you can read our article “Active listening: the key to communicating with others”
8. Give examples to solve your problems.
Developing the ability to solve problems is necessary to adapt to the changing environment in which we find ourselves.. Not only children, but adults are also overwhelmed with negative emotions. If we give children examples, it is easier for them to learn to deal with their emotions and the conflicts that surround them.
9. Emotional self-knowledge
The first step in becoming an emotionally intelligent person is know your own emotions and label them. To do this, different exercises can be performed, such as the emotional journal. In which they can write down what they have felt throughout the day and thus reflect on the experience. It is important that the
The use of stories is an ideal alternative for children to increase their emotional intelligence, which will positively influence their well-being. There are different stories in the market for kids to develop emotional intelligence. Adults, on the other hand, can read any of the books listed in our article “10 Emotional Intelligence Books You Need To Read”.
Books are an interesting strategy for educating toddlers on an emotional level; however, another educational resource in this regard is to use audiovisual content, which is both entertaining and educational.
Recommended article: “15 Emotional Intelligence Movies to Watch”
12. Praise them and highlight the positive aspects of their learning.
Positive reinforcement is one of the most common forms of teachingBut it is also very effective, especially at these ages. As long as the child is doing something well that is related to emotional education, you can reinforce his action, so that he understands that what he has done is right and thinks about it.
Many experts believe emotional education should be compulsory in schoolsBecause emotions are an important part of our lives and affect our behavior and emotional state. If you want to know some practical activities to educate the little ones emotionally, in our article “8 activities to work on emotions”, you will find a large choice of exercises.