Emotion coaching, a concept first introduced by John Gottman, is about giving support to children to become more aware of their emotions and to manage their own feelings especially during instances of misconduct and improper behaviour. The child is helped to develop more effective behavioural strategies.
Effects of emotion coaching
Essentially, emotion coaching techniques impart mechanism that will equip children to self-regulate their emotions and behaviour. This leads to developing positive behavior in children and creates opportunities for longer-term solutions to children's well-being and resilience. Hence children who are emotion coached will be more self-confident, perform better in social and academic situations, and even become physically healthier and more resilient.
The five essential steps of Emotion Coaching:
- Be aware of your child’s emotion. Pay attention to your own emotions, from happiness to sadness to anger.
- Recognize your child’s expression of emotion as a perfect moment for intimacy and teaching. Use emotional moments as opportunities to connect.
- Listen with empathy and validate your child’s feelings. Respect your child’s feelings by taking time to listen carefully.
- Help your child learn to label their emotions with words. Naming emotions helps soothe a child.
- Set limits when you are helping your child to solve problems or deal with upsetting situations appropriately. Explore solutions to problems together.
Emotion Coaching is based on the principle that nurturing and emotionally supportive relationships provide optimal contexts for the promotion of children's outcomes and resilience.
(Indebted to various sources)