Raising Emotionally Intelligent Kids

Imagine you’re a little kid and you are outside digging for worms. You find some big juicy ones and you feel so excited. You come into the house to show your mom, and she says “UGH! Take those outside! They don’t belong in the house, they’re disgusting!”

 

You might be like “oh, should I not be excited about these worms? I must have done something wrong. Maybe I shouldn’t like worms. I’m confused and I feel bad.”

Now, don’t get me wrong. As a parent, you are allowed to not like worms, it’s all good!

I am just using this as an illustration of my point – that how we react to our kids’ feelings helps them understand themselves and their emotions, for better or for worse, as I’m sure you’re aware.

And I’m guessing that you’re here because you WANT to help your kids behave better and react appropriately, and help them to listen and cooperate but you’re struggling to stay calm and in control so you can actually do just that.

I bet you’re able to willpower your way to being less reactive for a while because you know how important it is for you to not yell or get angry. But doing that feels SO draining and hard.

And sometimes you can’t sustain it, you’re burned out and resentful.

So I’m going to tell you why this is happening and how to fix it.

First of all, this is normal. You are wired to want to move away from pain and toward pleasure and when your kids are acting out, that for sure ISN’T fun for you, and so you want to run or fight.

And that running and fighting doesn’t work to help you stay calm or to not react or yell.

So how do you stop running away or fighting your kids and their behavior?

You need to actually stop it from being painful in the first place.

And the easiest way to do that is by changing your beliefs about your kids behaviors because those beliefs are stopping you from ACTUALLY FEELING calm and in control and understanding, and as a result your brain can’t sustain new actions and new habits, and sustain stopping old ones (read: yelling).

Because if you stay in default human mode and you unconsciously judge your kids reactions, you may CONFUSE your child and as a result your kids will find new “ways” (not fun ones) to tell you how they feel or they will REPRESS everything they feel.

Your energy (coming from your thoughts or judgements about them) may be unconsciously giving your child gives them the message that they are wrong to feel what they feel or that they are too much.

When they get this message over and over and over they may stop trusting how they feel, and stop trusting YOU to listen to them.

Now, hear me out – I know that this is NOT AT ALL what you mean to do.

You just might not know you are doing it. And it’s because you have never been taught how to NOT do it. And in a way that is sustainable and NOT energy and soul sucking.

And this energy may lead to increasing poor behavior and not being able to help your child calm down as easily or successfully.

So if your child is “acting out” more than you think they should, if you are fighting with your child often, if your child is melting down frequently and uncontrollably, if your child is telling is saying things like “you don’t love me” or “I’m a bad kid”, if they freak out if something is changed or moved or not in their control, if they are anxious, if they talk back or are angry often, you have a chance to change their behavior in BIG way.

You can’t control your child, yes, but you are THE BIGGEST INFLUENCE on their behavior, easily and without a lot of energy.

And that’s a GOOD thing.

And there’s no need to do this perfectly, just even TRYING to this at all will make a HUGE difference in how you influence them to behave more appropriately. And who doesn’t want that?

I teach my clients a way to respond to their kids in a way that respects their feelings and teaches them to respect others and respond appropriately.

If you struggle to not get triggered, to allow your kids to express their feelings, or to stop losing your cool, message me to chat or schedule a consult here and we can set up a call to discuss your specific situation and get you learning this skill so you can stop walking on eggshells and whiteknuckling being calm.

As a result of coaching, my clients are able to give their kids what some of them always wanted but never had as a child – total acceptance and the skill of managing their emotions. It’s so powerful.

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