Over the past few decades, there seems to have been a progressive shift in the style of parenting and the related challenges. Our fast paced lives and busier schedules have ensured that a few additional dimensions of parenting getting added to the list. One of such aspect is the Emotional Intelligence of the kids. The old school of parenting laid a lot of focus on the Intelligence Quotient (IQ) of the child i.e. How "smart" a child is, as compared to others, when measured by a set of challenges. The approach was more quantitative in nature with a number getting assigned to each kid.
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With changing times, and often with both the parents working, the kids now spend a lot of time at the child care/ after care centers. The kids now spend more time, if not equally, with other people. With less free playtime at and after school, kids today have fewer chances to practice social skills that are important for learning emotional intelligence and dealing with difficult situations. That’s why I feel, that it is more important for us, as parents, to lay out focus not just on the IQ of the kids, but on their overall personality. In other words, we need to monitor and boost our kids, Emotional Intelligence (EQ).
Here are a couple of ways, which I think, shall help in doing so:
1)Listen to the kids, not just hear. This is the basic change which would enable us to feel the emotions behind the words that our kids speak. We need to feel and share the emotions that the kids are trying to convey. The kids would surely appreciate it, and start expressing themselves better, in future
2)Practice the art of ‘Positive Reinforcement’. We need to practice to appreciate the behaviors which we want our kids to repeat. We may even encourage it by rewarding them for such actions.
3)Don’t react instantly. We need to check our gestures. After all, we need to set the example by staying calm. The kids will surely learn from this.
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4)Promote Group Activities. Encourage the kids to participate more in the group activities, apart from their regular school activities. This would probably give them a chance to interact with new people and face them.
5)Celebrate the occasions together. Promise your kids that you shall be there alongside them, on all the occasions, be it their birthday or an event at school.
In a nutshell, we need to adapt ourselves, spend that extra time with our kids, ask those caring questions, to ensure that our kids feel emotionally secure, and score high on their emotional intelligence. As per research the kids with high EQ are likely to perform better at the academics as well.