- Posted by spectrum
- On January 6, 2022
We all experience times when we feel sad, tired, annoyed, frustrated… All the negative feelings and emotions you can name. Similarly, children do experience big feelings. It is important to develop children’s emotional regulation skills, so that they can build and maintain meaningful relationships with others. So, what can we do to help our children develop their emotion regulation?
Here are some strategies and tips to build their emotional maturity
- As parents, we can create emotionally expressive environments at home and school.
- These are places and spaces where children are free to express how they feel and think without fear of being judged and ‘shut down’.
- We can develop our empathy response and use it with our children
- Children need to feel heard and respected. We don’t need to be quick to fix anything, just listen to understand.
- We can model our own emotion regulation with our children
- Talk about the feelings and emotions we are experiencing, why we feel what we feel and the strategies we used to regulate our emotions.
- We can openly and intentionally teach children strategies for self-regulation
- Taking deep-breaths
- Using sensory fidgets
- Taking a break
- Talking it out with a trusted person
- Doing meditations
- We talk to children about emotional regulation and strategies when they are calm
- When children are in a good mood, not in the middle of a tantrum/ meltdown. Making sure they are in the right mind set to learn.
- We should not be governed by our culture’s gender bias
- Boys are often expected to suppress their emotions much more than girls, whereas girls’ expression of emotions are seen to be melodramatic and not to be taken seriously.
- We should encourage both males and females to express their emotions freely and openly.
- Finally, we can remind our children that crying is a valid form of emotional expression and regulation. Tears are not a sign of weakness of incompetence. Crying can be an effective calming strategy and a great way to release emotional tension.
Read and re-read some new books and try some of these strategies today!