Yesterday we discovered an article which talked about some ‘weird’ parenting habits. I’m not so sure they’re weird necessarily, but if you really over-analyze your life then I’m sure you could start to doubt yourself. And if you compare yourself to other parents, then I’m sure you feel like they are parenting with ease and you are struggling. That’s normal.
So let’s dive in the next and final two.
Number 3 is “Labeling & coaching emotions”. This is probably the most interesting one and worth a re-read for the details, and some of the links. Check our website if you really care. She writes that she hears two pretty distinct ways that other people (adults) were taught emotions.
- Many were told to “just stop” emotional expressions a lot. “That’s enough crying.” “I don’t want to hear any more of that.”
- And many others were helped a lot in tricky situations, often with parents fixing big-feelings challenges for them. The parents did the emotions for them.
So, for those of us raised with either of those two habits, the evidence-backed practices of labeling feelings and coaching emotions can feel awfully awkward.
You can teach your child to label emotions when their own feelings pop up. (“Oh, you’re crying. You’re sad.”) But it can also happen as you read books, observe others’ reactions or draw faces. “Sally is frowning. What is she feeling?” “If I draw high-up eyebrows, what is my drawing feeling?”
And the 4th and last weird habit – that works:
Getting goofy. On the flip side of that serious emotion coaching is the value of getting goofy.
Laughter can have a big impact on our physical health. It releases mood-boosting endorphins and relieves stress. It also literally gets our blood flowing.
And, as any parent of a preschooler or pre-k jokester knows, kids then learn to tell their own jokes after that. And man are those …. Hilarious.