The next Independent Living Skills category I’d like to discuss is Emotional Maturity. This is a vital yet difficult skill that is often worked on throughout life. (From personal experience.)
So, rather than thinking about teaching a set skill, consider how you are working on emotional maturity in yourself and your children.
The five Emotional Maturity skills are:
- Recognizes other people’s feelings.
- Expresses own feelings appropriately.
- Knows several ways to deal with negative comments and criticism
- Knows how to nurture self
- Able to listen to others’ thoughts and feelings without getting angry.
Many parents I work with have children who struggle with emotions. Some explode, some can’t express themselves because they don’t know what they are feeling, and others don’t feel safe because they know their parents won’t approve. (The next category is the expression of anger so we’ll discuss anger in the future.)
You may be thinking, “I’m still working on my own emotional maturity so how can I help my child?” I think that raising children gives us an opportunity to confront our own emotional limitations and to be open about this in an appropriate way. When your children know you are doing inner work, that encourages them to not have to be perfect, either.
Your acknowledgment of your emotional struggles while trying to listen to them or during conflicts with them, lifts off of your children the heavy burden that “they are THE problem”. This release lets them open up and become more vulnerable with you. Your openness will build a greater emotional connection of trust between you and your children.
Because your ability to create a safe environment for feelings to be expressed is needed first, I encourage you to work on your use of Communication Blocks that keep your children from talking to you. If you aren’t familiar with this concept, check out my article Awareness of Communication Blocks is the First Step.
If you already have my book, Ally Parenting, then read chapters 9 – 13. After you figure out which blocks you think you do, then share this insight with your child and get their feedback on how they think you block them. If you want help with this process, then just reply to this email and say, Need Help With Blocks.
Remember that you are not a perfect parent, and never will be so please let that thought float away. Just be a parent who is trying. That’s all.
Don’t miss out on this fantastic opportunity to download the“The 7 Most Common Phrases Parents Say That Stop Kids From Listening”! You’ll also receive my weekly emails where you will learn how to transform conflict into cooperation in your home.
Copyright 2022 – Cynthia Klein, Family Happiness Expert – Coach, speaker, and author of Ally Parenting: A Non-Adversarial Approach to Transform Conflict Into Cooperation. Learn more about Cynthia’s services and contact her at her website, https://bridges2understanding.com. Contact Cynthia for permission to reproduce any information from this article.