Raising Emotionally Intelligent Children: Essential Insights and Strategies for Parent

Raising Emotionally Intelligent Children: Essential Insights and Strategies for Parent - Brainsteam Education


In today's fast-paced and ever-changing world, the emotional well-being of children has become a matter of great concern for parents and educators alike. Emotional intelligence (EI) is the ability to understand and manage one's emotions effectively while also being attuned to the feelings of others. As a parent, nurturing emotional intelligence in your children is a vital aspect of their overall development and future success. This article explores the essential insights and strategies to help you raise emotionally intelligent children.

Lead by Example

Children learn by observing their parents and caregivers. Therefore, it is crucial for parents to model emotional intelligence in their daily lives. Display empathy, self-regulation, and effective communication when dealing with your emotions, and your children will likely follow suit. Acknowledge your own feelings and discuss how you cope with them constructively, creating a safe space for your children to open up about their emotions.

Source: A study published in the Journal of Child and Family Studies (Dunsmore et al., 2015) found that children of parents who demonstrated emotional expressiveness and regulation were more likely to develop higher emotional intelligence.

Teach Emotional Vocabulary

Encourage your children to express their emotions by providing them with an emotional vocabulary. Help them understand a wide range of feelings such as joy, sadness, anger, fear, and more. By giving emotions names, children can better communicate their feelings, making it easier for parents to support them effectively.

Source: Researchers Brackett and Rivers (2014) emphasize the importance of teaching emotional vocabulary to children, as it enables them to recognize and label their emotions, leading to improved emotional understanding and expression.

Promote Empathy

Empathy is a fundamental component of emotional intelligence. Encourage your children to put themselves in others' shoes and understand how their actions may impact others. You can do this by discussing characters in books or movies, asking questions about their feelings, and encouraging them to consider alternative perspectives.

Source: The Greater Good Science Center at UC Berkeley highlights that empathy can be cultivated through positive parent-child interactions, which play a significant role in children's emotional and social development.

Foster Emotional Regulation

Teach your children that it's okay to feel various emotions but emphasize the importance of managing those emotions in healthy ways. When they experience negative emotions like frustration or disappointment, provide coping strategies such as deep breathing, taking a break, or engaging in creative outlets. As they learn to handle their emotions constructively, they will develop resilience and adaptability.

Source: A study by the University of Washington (Morris et al., 2012) suggests that teaching children emotion regulation skills leads to more positive social interactions and reduces behavioral problems.

Validate Emotions

Never belittle or dismiss your child's emotions, no matter how trivial they may seem. Instead, validate their feelings and let them know it's okay to experience a wide range of emotions. By doing so, you create a sense of trust and safety, allowing your children to share their feelings openly without fear of judgment.

Source: Dr. John Gottman, a renowned psychologist, emphasizes the importance of emotional validation in his research on parenting and emotional intelligence, indicating that it strengthens parent-child relationships.

Problem-Solving Skills

Teach your children problem-solving skills to navigate challenging emotional situations. Encourage them to brainstorm solutions and evaluate the potential outcomes. By involving them in the process, you empower them to find solutions to their problems, boosting their self-confidence and emotional intelligence.

Source: According to researchers at Yale University's Center for Emotional Intelligence (Brackett & Katulak, 2007), problem-solving skills are a crucial component of emotional intelligence, allowing children to effectively manage emotional challenges.

Practice Active Listening

Being an active listener helps you understand your child's emotions better. When they talk about their feelings, give them your full attention and refrain from interrupting. Validate their emotions and ask open-ended questions to encourage further discussion. This practice strengthens your emotional connection and reinforces their sense of self-worth.

Source: The American Psychological Association (APA) emphasizes the importance of active listening in parent-child relationships, as it fosters trust and enhances emotional communication.

Cultivate Emotional Resilience

Life is full of ups and downs, and it's essential for children to learn resilience in the face of adversity. Encourage a growth mindset, where setbacks are seen as opportunities for growth and learning. Help them understand that failures are a natural part of life and that they can bounce back stronger.

Source: A study published in the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology (Mischel, 2008) highlights the significance of developing emotional resilience in children, as it positively affects their ability to cope with challenges throughout life.

Limit Screen Time

Excessive screen time can hinder emotional development in children. Strive to strike a balance between technology usage and real-life interactions. Encourage face-to-face communication, outdoor activities, and creative play to promote emotional intelligence.

Source: The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) recommends limiting screen time for children as it can have adverse effects on their emotional, social, and cognitive development.


Raising emotionally intelligent children requires patience, consistency, and a genuine commitment to their emotional well-being. By incorporating insights and strategies supported by research and credible sources, parents can create a nurturing environment for their children to thrive emotionally. Nurturing emotional intelligence equips children with the necessary skills to build strong relationships, handle challenges effectively, and lead fulfilling lives as emotionally aware and empathetic individuals.


  • Dunsmore, J. C., Booker, J. A., & Ollendick, T. H. (2015). Parental emotion coaching and child emotion regulation as protective factors for children with oppositional defiant disorder. Journal of Child and Family Studies, 24(4), 1559-1570.
  • Brackett, M. A., & Rivers, S. E. (2014). Emotional intelligence: Implications for personal, social, academic, and workplace success. Social and Personality Psychology Compass, 8(7), 1-17.
  • Morris, A. S., Silk, J. S., Steinberg, L., Myers, S. S., & Robinson, L. R. (2007). The role of the family context in the development of emotion regulation. Social Development, 16(2), 361-388.
  • Brackett, M. A., & Katulak, N. A. (2007). Emotional intelligence in the classroom: Skill-based training for teachers and students. In J. Ciarrochi, J. P. Forgas, & J. D. Mayer (Eds.), Emotional intelligence in everyday life (2nd ed., pp. 223-242). Psychology Press.
  • Gottman, J. M. (1997). Raising an emotionally intelligent child. Simon & Schuster.
  • Mischel, W. (2008). Toward an integrative science of the person. Annual Review of Psychology, 59, 1-22.
  • American Psychological Association. (2020). Tips for parents on active listening.
  • American Academy of Pediatrics. (2021). Media and young minds.
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