Angela Benedetto, PhD
If someone wants to climb the career ladder in education (to earn more or to have an influence on the school system or for any other reason), they must choose the administrative path.
We’re in the midst of a historical first. The first generation of children raised entirely on smartphones, the iGeneration, is facing a skyrocketing mental illness rate, and studies suggest that too much screen time is to blame. In fact, suicide in teenage girls is the highest that it’s been in over 40 years. What can we do to protect our children?
After decades, social and emotional learning (SEL) is finally getting the attention it deserves from parents and teachers who recognize that a child’s emotional health is as important as his physical health. Unfortunately, getting SEL programs into school has proven difficult, as school boards and directors resist adding yet another program to underfunded schools.
As educators, parents, and childcare workers, we’re lucky enough to live in an era where emotional intelligence is finally discussed in the open. Researchers focus on the benefits of high EQ in childhood, but they’re less vocal about the problems that plague adults with low emotional intelligence as they try to navigate the social aspects of school, work, and relationships.
Without the right coping mechanisms, anxiety can be crippling. The problem is, finding those coping mechanisms is a real challenge, because no two cases respond the same way. Plenty of patients bounce back and forth between SSRI treatment, cognitive-behavioral therapy, and lifestyle changes without finding quite the right balance.
Emotional intelligence (or EQ) skill-building programs help individuals to build their own personal emotional awareness. This includes regulating personal emotions as well as responding to peer emotions. Developing EQ can help children today and later in life by giving kids the skills they need to manage their feelings, solve problems, and function well, later translating into a successful adulthood.
There are a million social reasons to encourage your children to develop their EQ. We already know that children with high EQ grow up to be great leaders and strong problem solvers. But what about the neuroscientific benefits of challenging and growing your EQ?