Your Child's EQ and Its Relationship to Manners: Ask Mrs. Manners

Suzanne Murray

Photo by BlogMama
The toddler years are the perfect age to start teaching your kids manners and good habits. Today's guest blogger, MrsManners (Angela Pitre), founder of  Family Manners Made Fun, is here to help.

This week I thought it would be fun to pull something straight out of the headlines, Alina Cho of CNN did a piece this week on your Emotional Quotient (EQ). It really caught my attention as the topic completely supports my model of teaching manners.

What is an EQ? Your EQ is the emotional equivalent of your IQ, which, as it turns out, makes up only 20 percent of your overall intelligence, according to Roger Weissberg whose research is the basis for this life-altering concept.

Why is EQ important? Weissberg says that developing emotional wellness not only improves social behavior, but makes kids smarter. Children who have proper emotional training are more likely to behave and do well in school; they're socially aware, able to express their emotions, and can form good relationships with others. These kids are also less likely to get into fights and do drugs.

What role does EQ play when it comes to manners? Emotional intelligence like good manners can be earned. They both require the ability to understand how your behavior affects others.

How can you improve your child's EQ? With emotional coaching, which is best to begin when your child starts to understand the concept of emotions (usually around 3). Some emotional coaching techniques include validating your child's feelings (instead of saying "There's nothing to be scared of," say, "It can be scary to try new things"), and helping your child name his feelings. Toddlers have a hard time describing what they feel -- help build your child's EQ by giving him words for his feelings: disappointed, frightened, excited, and so on.

Why is your EQ is important? You are setting an example for your child. Take an EQ test, and find out what your EQ is and what areas you need to work on. While you're "becoming the person you want your child to be" by modeling your EQ skills for your toddler, you may find that your relationships improve, along with your leadership skills. Who knows what other benefits you might get out of it, especially if you are in the work place or looking to get back into it. 


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