Developing emotional intelligence enables us to manage emotions effectively and avoid being derailed, for example, by a flash of anger. Children with higher emotional intelligence are better able to pay attention, are more engaged in school, have more positive relationships, and are more empathic.

6 useful tips on how to develop emotional intelligence in your child:

1.Label your feelings:

Children need to know how to recognize their emotions. You might help them by labeling your own emotions. Using sentences like “I feel angry because I missed the bus” or “I am happy now because you hugged me” can help your child build the needed vocabulary to express their self.

2.Validate the child’s feelings

Sometimes when our children are upset it can be tempting to minimize how they’re feeling. For example, if your child is crying desperately for a 3rd chocolate egg. Using a dismissive comment in situation like this will only teach the child that their emotions are wrong. A good approach would be to validate their feelings and show empathy.

3. Create a routine:

 Speech is too abstract for children, but they understand nonverbal communication better than we do. Try to be honest with them so that there is no disharmony between what you say and what they see. Respond to their feelings in the same way to prevent confusion. It is less likely for a child to be confused about their emotions if the know what to expect in their everyday life.

4. Set boundaries:

Setting boundaries helps children recognize the socially acceptable behaviors. Children’s greatest reinforcer is their parents’ attention. Give big emotional responses to appropriate behaviors. Talk about your feelings with your child and help them do the same.

5.Encourage independence:

It is tempting to put on the child’s shoes when we are in a hurry or to hold his hand while climbing the slide. Independence is a key factor in developing self-motivation. Encourage the child to do everything on their own, even if it takes time and seems like a very difficult task for him.

6.Develop problem-solving skills:

Part of building emotional intelligence is the ability to deal with problems. Encourage your child to try dealing with conflict situations on their own by helping them identify 5 possible ways of solving the problem. Then help them choose the most appropriate solution. The ideas don’t have to be great, the process of looking for a solution is important.

„We are dangerous when we are not conscious of our responsibility for how we behave, think, and feel..“


Venera Simeonova is a child psychologist and corporate wellness coach. Specialized in working with children with behavioral problems and parent counseling. Focused on early childhood development, child anxiety, family dynamics and personal development.

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