Emotional Resiliance

The last few years have been tough on our children, particularly considering the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic. This has been a global trauma and we are only just starting to see the toll it has taken. For example, nursery settings are being asked to focus upon developing speech and literacy as they are noticing that within the early years setting, speech and language has been impacted. It is, therefore, vital that we support children with developing their resilience, which is the ‘grit’ they need to get through life’s many challenges. Emotional resilience is concerned with our ability to positively manage our feelings and emotions, particularly the big, difficult ones. Teaching our children how to deal with their feelings and emotions in pro-active ways will lay a solid foundation for their mental health.

There are many ways in which we can support our children to develop their emotional resilience, here are some tips:

· Keep reinforcing to children that their feelings and emotions are temporary and ever changing just like the weather – knowing this can make them easier to tolerate. Younger children might enjoy the rhyme: “Remember our rainy feelings don’t stay forever, they’ll soon change again just like the weather!”

· Helping children to name their emotions is hugely important as it supports them with emotional literacy, validates their feelings and provides them with a language to be able to express themselves with.

· Try not to label feelings as ‘good’ or ‘bad’ – all feelings are a useful guide and are part of our human experience.

· Encourage children to allow and express their feelings rather than ignore them or get rid of them – it is much healthier.

· Encourage children to express their feelings in different ways as it will help them to build up a tool-kit. For example, children can express their feelings through talking, writing, drawing, singing, role-play and dancing.

 

Another great way to develop emotional resilience in children, is to teach them self-compassion. We are particularly good at reminding children to be kind to others; however, we also need to teach them to be kind to themselves and to recognise what they might need when they are having a tough day. When they are having a tough time, engage them in something they enjoy doing to take their mind off their worries and feelings. Use their five senses to engage them in some mindful activities – reading some jokes, listening to some songs, enjoy some delicious food or drink, smelling a lovely candle touching / snuggling with a soft blanket. Our senses send messages to our brain, so activities involving the senses will stimulate calm and relaxation.

There are a range of free resources and activities to support children with developing their emotional resilience on my website, available at www.jessicasbowers.co.uk

 

Jessica Bowers is a Well-being Writer, Counsellor and Psychotherapist and mum of 3 children. Jessica has over 20 years’ experience of supporting both adults and children with their emotional well-being.

 

Jessica is giving away a copy of her new book FANTASTIC FIN FACES HIS FEARS!  To win a copy just send your contact details to Nora@mccarthypublishing.co.uk by July 1st.   

 

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