The importance of emotional intelligence in children’s development

father push children in wheelbarrow

How can I boost my child’s emotional intelligence? Behavioural expert, Abby Rees shares her essential tips.

As adults and parents, sometimes we forget that for children it’s difficult to navigate complex social situations, to keep cool and remain collected in stressful environments.

We forget because we’ve already learnt how to deal with these environments, we’ve learnt what is socially acceptable behaviour and an appropriate response to stimulus.

Providing your child with the adequate tools to navigate social environments and develop emotionally is critical to their growth and ability to self-regulate.

Short Course by CIT Solutions is offering a brand new course, ‘Emotional Intelligence for Parents’ facilitated by behavioural and emotional intelligence expert, Abby Rees.

The course aims to empower parents with the knowledge and tools to understand their child’s behaviour and how they should model appropriate behaviour. The course is a mix of theory and practice, with an emphasis on the latter, so that you can continue building and shaping the emotional intelligence of yourselves and your children.

Do you want to instil confidence, strong social skills and the ability to identify and regulate emotions in the children you raise or teach? Then Emotional Intelligence for Parents short course is for you!

What is emotional intelligence?

We sat down to chat with Abby to get her insight into the complex world of emotional intelligence.

“Emotional intelligence, or EQ, differs from IQ which is facts and figures and what we know about the world. EQ is what we do with that, how we identify and understand ourselves and how we translate that to identify with other people. ”

“You might have all the right skills, be the brightest and best at facts and figures but if you aren’t able to collaborate, work with others, share and build new ideas then that IQ knowledge will only take you so far.”

“EQ is essentially our soft skills, our ability to respond appropriately to environmental and social situations and cues.”

Why is it important for children to be emotionally intelligent?

“It is super important for children to be emotionally intelligent because it equips them with the ability to interpret social and environmental situation and prepares them to respond appropriately.”

“Studies are showing, time and time again, that people might have a high IQ but if they don’t have a solid EQ they are not as successful in life. In these studies, success is defined as overall quality of life. So people with higher EQ, even if they have lower IQ, they were still earning more money, living longer, having better relationships and reporting higher general life satisfaction.”

“Who doesn’t want that for their child? The emotional intelligence for parents short course is designed to ignite the conversation between you and your child and empower you with some tools and techniques to grow and develop your child’s EQ.’

“It’s estimated in studies that children born today will have up to seven different careers. The social skills they are going to need to navigate those careers, even things like social media, are going to be vital for their success in achieving what they want out of life.”

Abby shared a few essential tips parents can use to understand and boost their child’s ability to cope.

  • Ask yourself or your child these three simple questions.

What is it that I am feeling? How is it affecting me? And how should I respond in a socially appropriate manner?

Give yourself or your child a moment to answer these questions and come to a resolution.

  • Behaviour is a form of communication.

All too often we view behaviour as good or bad and nothing more. However, when we link it to what we know about emotions we are then able to understand that our child may not be using a string of words to communicate something but their behaviour is trying to communicate it.

There is always a hidden reason behind behaviour—start the conversation with your child to find out.

  • Thinking and learning styles.

You may think you’re communicating in a manner that is crystal clear but your child may not understand or hear it that way.

Try to communicate to your child in a manner or language that they may understand, like drawing a picture or using a playground reference.

Investing in your child today will not only enhance your relationship but it will empower them for the future.

For an in-depth look into the primary elements of EQ and how you as a parent can master several practical techniques to teach your child, take a look at Short Courses by CIT Solutions short course Emotional Intelligence for Parents.

Emotional Intelligence for Parents is designed and delivered by behaviour change expert Abby Rees who brings over 20 years’ experience in the field. She is a Meta-Coach, University Lecturer, Facilitator and Writer and has expansive experience working with children with high support needs.


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