According to Psychology Today, “Emotional intelligence refers to the ability to identify and manage one’s own emotions, as well as the emotions of others.”
Emotional intelligence is generally said to include at least three skills: emotional awareness, or the ability to identify and name one’s own emotions; the ability to harness those emotions and apply them to tasks like thinking and problem solving; and the ability to manage emotions, which includes both regulating one’s own emotions when necessary and helping others to do the same.
Teaching our children to be emotionally intelligent can only benefit them as they mature into adulthood.
Emotional Intelligence, or EQ is also referred to as social and emotional learning. There are many benefits of higher emotional intelligence such as:
- Kids with higher EQ do better on tests and typically have higher grades.
- Children who display higher EQ tend to grow into adults who are more likely to graduate from college and enter the workforce by their mid-twenties.
- People with high EQ are less likely to deal with mental illness.
Don't worry too much if it seems like your child has a low EQ; it develops over time. Practicing EQ skills can help our children develop these skills.
How can Parents Raise Emotionally Intelligent Children?
- Identify what they are feeling – it helps if parents can teach emotion words.
- Empathize with your child – express an understanding of what they are going through.
- Model Healthy Expressions of Emotions – Being expressive rather than shifting blame.
- Learn to be a Problem Solver – Coach your child rather than solve for them
- Teach Children Coping Skills – expressing feelings, venting to parents, drawing their feelings, etc.
People with higher emotional intelligence handle life with a more optimistic attitude and experience less burnout and stress.
We can't rescue our children from everything; that's why it is so important to teach them to problem-solve. Often, a parent's desire to solve every issue prevents us from seeing the child's need to learn problem-solving skills.
Consequences are part of the growing-up process. Of course, it doesn't feel good at the moment, but allowing our children to develop these skills prepares them for adulthood. So, remember to coach rather than solve the problem for kids. Even though it's hard, don't always take away the natural consequences.
EQ on the decline
Over the past three decades we can see that IQ is increasing (24 points); at the same time Emotional Intelligence (EQ) is declining. Raising emotionally intelligent children increases their self-confidence, performance in school, and deepens their social relationships and resilience.
If emotional intelligence is such a key to a successful future, how can parents teach it to children? That's what we are talking about in this episode of A Healthy Bite with Kerry Goyette.
Meet Kerry Goyette
She is CEO & Founder of Aperio Consulting Group, Certified Professional Behavior Analyst and Certified Forensic Interviewer with postgraduate studies in psychometrics.
Book: The Non-Obvious Guide to Emotional Intelligence. Named among the Best Business Books For Summer 2019 by Forbes and among 7 Books on Relationship Building Every Entrepreneur should read by Forbes and featured on Bloomberg TV.
Watch this episode:
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