Kids emotions in motion

This is an incredibly important topic not only for parents, but for anyone. Children are the next generation, we need to pay such close attention to what we feed their little minds with, what kind of environment we create for them but equally how we equip them for such environment.

Having my own daughter of 5, I find myself every day in a place where I have to be extremely alert and open to her emotional states of being. The moment I am not, I am effectively “asleep”. But here is the trick, not only do we need to stay attune to the kids, but we need to help them to stay attuned to themselves too.

Did you know that all trauma happens primarily in the fist 21 years of our lives, particularly the first 14. This is the time when all those distressing events and moments make the most impact. How so? Its very simple, children at that age are simply not developed enough to process emotions at a high level, and unless they are helped and guided to do so, they push them straight into their subconscious. The fact that they are not meant to, and that’s why they are not equipped, is a topic for another day..

And so the only way we can help a child to grow up as un-fractured and wholesome as possible is by sharing this responsibility for their emotional well-being with them. Every time you see your child has bottled some emotion up, which may not always be obvious, but you can notice if you pay attention to the signs, such as frequent colds, tantrums, clinginess, neediness, waking up in the middle of the night, being overly controlling about what they eat or wear or simply crying all the time, its time to get to work. Focus on the child, find the right moment, when they are relaxed and feel safe. It may be while you reading them a book, or telling them a story, or drawing together, start a gentle inquiry process. It is great if you can feel what the child feels, and so their emotions are easy for you to identify, but it is ok if you don’t. Play a guessing game. Start softly asking if something is bothering them, if something upsetting happened… Keep going, for days if necessary, until you find what it is that called an emotional reaction in them. What you are doing in this process is helping them to identify the problem. And please don’t be afraid to talk about the uncomfortable. Generally, in life, learn to talk about the uncomfortable. Its healthy, its liberating, its authentic… Once you found what it is that got to the child, really zoom in on it, ask them how it feels, what color it is, and most importantly tell them it is ok to feel that way, that whatever happened is part of life. Give them permission to feel that way, encourage them to get the emotion out, whatever that is – anger, resentment, sadness.. etc.. It is not easy, not for the child, and certainly not for you. One – because you don’t want to see the child in pain, and two – because you might not want to be dealing with the issue yourself. Recognize that within yourself, deal with it, and help your child to deal with it. It may seem like a lot of work, but I promise in the long run you will have a much happier and centered child. This work is indispensable as what you are doing is teaching your child tools for life, so that they know how to deal with emotions in real time, process upset and pain and have warrior attitude.

Thank you for reading! Stay tuned and until next time!