New generations find it very difficult to raise children. Parents want a good amount of coaching to make the relationship better with their children. As a part of the Employee Assistance Program, I can present a very sufficient solution. I have recently read "Raise an Emotionally Intelligent Child" by John Gottman who explained how to raise a child in a very systematic manner.
When architect builds the bridge, he or she has to create very strong foundation with cement and concrete. This myth applies to children as well. Children often come home with their problems, but they also see parents in problems. Not being able to share their problems, children lose their self-esteem. Parents have to learn how to communicate with their children. Gottman describes empathy as the foundation of emotion coaching. Empathy is the ability to feel what another person is feeling. Once parents become empathetic, children see parents as allies. In order to have successful parenting, Gottman explains five steps of emotion coaching in chapter 3.
The most important thing is to be aware of the child's emotions. When parents cannot control negative emotions from children, children learn to hide their own. They start building self-denial. However, once parents try to gain knowledge of emotion coaching, they learn to get aware of child's emotions. This is the first step where child and parents connection builds up. At the same time, parents also have to make sure that they are conscious about forgiveness. Parents often get mad at their child, but once they realize their mistake, they should ask forgiveness from their child. This helps child to feel comfortable with their emotions.
Once you are aware of child's emotion, parents should start recognizing the emotions as an opportunity. Parents should be able to figure out the negative emotions of their child's when they look at child. This shows that parents are interested in child's emotion, and they really care about child. It will help child to build up the confidence. Child will start seeing parents as their role model, and they will try to follow them.
The next step for parents is to listen empathetically and validating the child's feeling. Parents should make eye contact with children, and let them know that they are paying attention to child's emotions. As child tries to express their emotions, parents should start labeling them. This will help child to define their emotions as needed, and it is very good skill for empathy. If you failed to do this, it will discourage child with their emotions. Labeling emotions is the best key to make child understand emotions in a very good manner. When parents start taking interest in child, child learns to create new ideas to handle their problems. They think of new ways to solve problems. This makes a child unique.
After completing all this steps, at the last, parents should empathize on setting limits while helping then child problem solve. When parents do that, they should acknowledge child the consequences of their doings. Many times child do good things and parents should encourage them by rewarding. However, they also should punish them for misbehaviors. The child will start looking into positive direction when they lose some of the privileges. They will try not to do the same thing again. After being a successful parent, child will come up to you with the problems. Instead of telling them the solution straight out, parents should inspire child to come up with their own solutions. Once they start talking about solutions with parents, parents' approval and disapproval on that solutions will help child to come up with some more solutions. This will also help child to set up some goals in their lives because they have better understanding of the relationship with parents. Child will come up with lists of the solutions, but parents should make sure that child is going for the better solution. Child will feel good about them.
By learning all these steps, which are described by Gottman, Ph.D, parents will have great relationship with their child. Emotion coaching is the best way to understand your child's emotions. These steps are here for us, so make them useful when needed.