The Key to Raising an Emotionally Healthy Child

Your behavior is the greatest influence on your kid’s emotional health. The way in which you choose to parent has a direct impact on their social and emotional development. That can feel like an enormous responsibility. The good news is that you don’t have to be a perfect parent to raise an emotionally healthy kid. Sometimes it’s just a matter of having some proven-effective tools that will help to bring out the best in you.

“Parents who are informed and educated have a greater likelihood of raising children who experience excellent health and emotional well-being”
Center for Disease Control

I’ve compiled a list of simple techniques you can use to promote healthy development of your child’s: self-esteem, coping abilities, problem-solving skills, empathy towards others, and healthy expression of emotion.

Research has shown that this type of emotion coaching is a tremendous help in reducing future problem behavior in children.

 

What Empowered Parents Can Do:

  • Start by accepting that there is no such thing as a perfect parent. Accept that parenting is an evolution.

  • Honestly look at your own coping skills. Your child’s ability to cope is learned from how they watch you cope.

  • Accept help and advice from those parents who you admire. They learned from someone else too.

  • Learn your child. Your child has unique needs and sometimes you need to tailor parenting towards those needs. Know how your child learns.

  • Don’t try to solve all their problems. Let them come up with solutions. It helps them to learn problem solving and builds their confidence.

  • Place value on time spent together rather than on material possessions. Children may associate feelings of the love to the material items rather than to the parent.

  • Promote self-worth by creating opportunities for them to demonstrate their gifts, talents, uniqueness, and abilities.

  • Establish routine acts of giving; donate at certain times of year, give away used clothes and toys, sponsor a family, walk an elderly person’s pet; if they get a toy, allow them to pick a second toy to give to a less advantaged child.

  • Celebrate accomplishments; don’t compare child to other kids but show them how they can improve to have skills like kids THEY admire.

  • Accept your child’s limitations; pushing them on something they don’t love may prevent them from ever finding their true purpose.

  • Put their needs first even if it goes against what you would like. Do not live vicariously through them as if may foster resentment in the child.

  • Truly listen to your child; use their words whenever possible; it makes them feel heard and confirms you are listening.

  • Encourage questions; don’t worry about having the answers and be okay with telling them that you don’t know.

  • Encourage the expression of emotion and resolution; expression helps them to release the energy and then you help guide them through process of de-escalating.

  • Promote mutual trust and respect.

  • When kids need to talk, stop what you are doing and listen. You want to encourage them to come to you with their problems rather than going to friends or social media. If you are always too busy they will eventually stop coming to you.

 

For more parenting tips and useful information to help you make important decisions read my book Empowered Parenting.

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