Helping Your Child Manage their Emotions
Children can find it quite difficult to regulate their emotions which can lead to outbursts, temper tantrums and bad behavior. Although this is a normal part of childhood, you can help your child manage their feelings by introducing them to certain strategies. Self-regulation is a skill that can be developed over time, and helps children calm down and cope with emotions in a healthy way. To find out more, take a look at the following advice from an independent school in Buckinghamshire.
A lot of a child’s behaviour that comes with feeling strong emotions is down to the inability to properly communicate how they are feeling. It is important to help them understand their emotions and learn the language to describe how they feel. Be a role model for your child and explain your own emotions to them. If you have gotten angry, explain how you are feeling and explain what led you to feel that way. This will encourage your child to communicate their feelings to you in the future rather than just letting their emotions take over. You can also use reflection as a way of unpacking their emotions. After a tantrum or outburst, wait until they have calmed down and ask them to describe how they felt and what led them to feel that way. The more your child is familiar with their own emotions and the process which leads them to strong emotional reactions, the more equipped they will be to manage difficult situations.
You can also introduce your child to strategies to help them regulate their emotions, helping them keep composure and directing their energy in a more positive direction. Mindfulness is a great way to regulate mood day to day and can be called upon when emotions start to bubble over. Talk your child through a few simple breathing exercises, and remember, the more you practice together, the more likely they are to utilise them independently. One method is to have your child close their eyes and breathe in and out slowly. They should place a hand on their stomach and try to notice the rise and fall of the belly which follows their breath. Not only will this distract them from the source of their upset but it will help to calm their body and mind, allowing them to deal with their feelings with a more level head.