“Attunement describes how reactive a person is to another’s emotional needs and moods. A person who is well attuned will respond with appropriate language and behaviors based on another person’s emotional state”.
Attunement is the key to helping your child navigate and regulate his/her emotions. It is so important for a child to learn how they feel and how to manage those emotions. There are 3 things a parent should avoid doing in order to support this process:
If your child wants to convey something to you it’s unwise to dismiss what they are trying to tell you. Even if it is a silly or unpractical idea. Their subconscious mind will evaluate your dismissal as their opinion is not valued and they are not worthy.
Instead try “wow, that’s a really creative idea, I like that. It’s a shame we can’t do that today…”
Do you hear yourself tell your child “That’s not nice” or ” well, what do expect?”
Again, your child’s mind will be learning that his opinion doesn’t count for much. This may stop your child from exploring ideas and offering their opinions.
Instead try “I can see that when Sarah said that she hurt your feelings. I understand how you must feel. Give me hug!”
Reassure. Discuss with your child what Superpowers are present. Help shrink the negative Superpowers and grow some positive ones such as ‘Calm’. Later on, you can share your feelings and help give your child some perspective and learning.
Don’t ignore or diminish negative emotions
Feelings of fear, sadness, anger or worry are normal for us humans so when your kids feel these feelings don’t dismiss them. Let them know it is ok to feel sad, disappointment, scared etc… It is ok to cry too. But also let them know that you are here for them, you understand. Kids grow up confused when the messages you give are “keep positive”, “cheer up”, “stop crying”, “don’t be angry” or “stop whinging” while they are feeling scared, sad angry or worried.