BusinessDay

Little humans big feelings

Emotions are the gifts that we should always be grateful to have, for without them we might never be able to relate with anything or anyone and may never come to the full understanding of who we are or why we act the way we do.

As humans we experience several emotions in a day and every emotion expressed or experienced is extremely valid at that point.

As parents, it never truly dawns on us that a one-month-old baby is human and is experiencing several emotions that cannot be fully expressed for us to understand.

We often believe that when they get to the age of communication, then their emotions can be considered, this ideology or opinion has created a huge wedge between our children and us as parents in dealing with their emotions at that level.

These little humans have big feelings and an emotion not expressed is more deadly than the ones expressed. We certainly do not want to have a child who is constantly imploding on the inside because the environment is not conducive for them to unpack their feelings.

Often times than not, children experience a lot of repression from their parents and this births low self-esteem, passive-aggressive behaviours and a lack of self-worth in some cases. Words like “stop crying”, “do not speak”, “why do you want to know”, “only speak when spoken to”, etc.., as they digest these words daily children begin to shut down on the inside and carry on with these feelings until they become adults and they begin to manifest these emotions in diverse ways.

We are raising children who fight back because they have been repressed constantly and/ or we have children who take a flight because they do not want to face the situation while others might put up a defensive front. These children become voiceless and all these happen as a result of the programming you have given them unconsciously through their developmental years.

Read also: Do not live a lie ‘managing’ your abuse or abuser, speak out!

As a society, we value Intelligence Quotient (IQ) more than the Emotional Quotient (EQ). What then is the use of having extremely intelligent children who are emotionally damaged, awkward or socially inept simply because they lack emotional intelligence?

Emotions are like the energy they cannot be destroyed so it will always show up most times when least expected and can cause huge chaos. Teach yourself to pay attention and validate the emotions your children are expressing so you are equipped to help them navigate them wisely.

It is never too early to start a child with the importance and beauty of emotional intelligence, they should be exposed from the very beginning and It starts with learning and perfecting the art of apologies, as parents we must learn to admit when we have done wrong or dropped the ball with our children and apologise as these little humans have big feelings also. we definitely do not want them growing up to become monsters who do not thrive well in families, communities and even to themselves. It is so easy for children to forgive and as parents we must model forgiveness to them as well, do not keep reiterating all they have done in conversations as you claim to have forgiven them. Always remember, that these feelings are stored up and someday will bear fruits.

Emotions drives behaviour, when you notice that little human acting out, find out the root cause of that behaviour and recognize their feelings and act intelligently immediately. Most times, these emotions might seem as though it overpowers them and they are unable to control them. At these times, we must teach them how to name or label their emotions and empower them to become emotional governors, when they are able to name them and connect to them, they sure will know how to navigate and make great decisions.

Also, it is important to take into cognizance that when their emotional busters are out, do not react because your reaction may trigger a lot inside them and these inner conversations reflect on how they see and treat themselves. As parents learn to respond intentionally do not be reactive

Emotions are like honoured guests you have to welcome them in and allow the guest express their feelings so you know and understand how to help your children deal with them. It is a journey of partnership beyond assumptions.