Are you being deeply understood, truly supported and completely and utterly loved?

“We had 11 truly joyful years of the deepest love, happiest marriage, and truest partnership that I could imagine … He gave me the experience of being deeply understood, truly supported and completely and utterly loved – and I will carry that with me always. Most importantly, he gave me the two most amazing children in the world…

Dave was my rock. When I got upset, he stayed calm. When I was worried, he said it would be ok. When I wasn’t sure what to do, he figured it out…” wrote Sheryl Sandberg in a moving tribute to her husband.

 

How many women are lucky to have such amazing, empowering and supportive men in their lives? Men, who empower them to achieve their full potential in life and do share the load of less glamorous family chores to support them. Men, who hear women’s voice and treat women’s choices with respect. Men who recognise that “if we tapped the entire pool of human resources and talent, our collective performance would improve… the achievements will extend beyond those individuals to benefit us all”.

Respect, Give It To Get It

As Sheryl Sandberg points out in her book Lean In, “women still face real obstacles in the professional world, including blatant and subtle sexism… Too few workplaces offer the flexibility and access to child care and parental leave that are necessary for pursuing a career while raising children. Plus, women have to prove themselves to a far greater extent than men do… A 2011 McKinsey report noted that men are promoted based on potential, while women are promoted based on past accomplishments.”

discrimination against women in the workplace

Sheryl also notes that “in addition to the external barriers erected by society women are hindered by barriers that exist within ourselves. We hold ourselves back in ways both big and small, by lacking self-confidence, by not raising out hands, and by pulling back when we should be leaning in. We internalize the negative messages we get throughout our lives… We lower our own expectations of what we can achieve.”

So true. I’ve observed that so often during my University years. While the majority of male students were charging in the exam rooms totally unprepared but still full of confidence, the best female students were spending days and nights preparing for exams, however were still trembling with fear of a failure.

After the exams male students often credited their success to their own innate qualities and skills, while female students often attributed success to good luck.  Interestingly enough, after a failed exam male students were often blaming bad luck, while female students were more likely to believe it was due to an inherent lack of ability.

While some women are happy to stay at home looking after their family and children, others might want to pursue career. In both cases they need to have a choice.

Unfortunately, as Sheryl Sandberg points out, while “professional ambition is expected of men” it is “optional – or worse, sometimes even negative – for women. “She is very ambitious” is not a compliment…

Men are continually applauded for being ambitious and powerful and successful, but women who display these same traits often pay a social penalty. Female accomplishments come at a cost….

The stereotype of a working woman is rarely attractive. Popular culture has long portrayed successful working women as so consumed by their careers that they have no personal life. If a female character divides her time between wok ad family, she is almost always harried and guilt ridden…”

While acknowledging biological and some psychological difference between men and women, it is important to recognise that, as Sheryl puts it, “in today’s world, where we no longer have to hunt in the wild for our food”, both men and women should be given a fair chance to make their own choices. ”

However “until women have supportive employers and colleagues as well as partners who share family responsibilities, they don’t have real choice. And until men are fully respected for contributing inside the home, they don’t have real choice either. Equal opportunity is not equal unless everyone receives the encouragement that makes seizing those opportunities possible. Only then can both men and women achieve their full potential. …

Men's New Role as Househusband Challenges Chinese Tradition

We all want the same thing: to feel comfortable with our choices and to feel validated by those around us. If more children see fathers at school pickups and mothers who are busy at jobs, both girls and boys will envision more options for themselves. Expectations will not be set by gender but by personal passion, talents, and interests…

My greatest hope is that my son and my daughter will be able to choose what to do with their lives without external or internal obstacles slowing them down or making them question their choices.”

Thanks Dave and Sheryl for giving us a real example of the deepest love, happiest marriage, and truest partnership in which you both were supporting each other in making your choices in life and reaching your full potential.

A photo of Dave Goldberg, the Facebook executive, who died suddenly on May 2, 2015. He is pictured with his wife Sheryl Sandberg. Photo posted by Sheryl Sandberg on facebook.

Are you being deeply understood, truly supported and
completely and utterly loved?

THE END

Image 1: from http://img-hd.com/dave-goldberg/
Image 2: from http://dailytechwhip.com
I
mage 3: from http://unitedtruthseekers.com/
I
mage 4: from Are You Discriminating Against Women Employees Without Even Knowing It?
I
mage 5: from http://what3words.tumblr.com
I
mage 6: from http://247moms.com
I
mage 7: from http://www.womenofchina.cn
Image 8: from https://queerguesscode.files.wordpress.com
Image 9: from http://www.theguardian.com

Are you climbing a career ladder or swinging on a career jungle gym?

From http://www.sprint2thetable.com

“The most common metaphor for careers is a ladder, but this concept no longer applies to most workers… Careers are a jungle gym, not a ladder,”  writes Sheryl Sandberg, who attributes the metaphor to Fortune magazine editor Pattie Sellers.

“Ladders are limiting – people can move up or down, on or off. Jungle gyms offer more creative exploration. There’s only one way to get to the top of a ladder, but there are many ways to get to the top of a jungle gym.

The jungle gym model benefits everyone, but especially women who might be starting careers, switching careers, getting blocked by external barriers, or reentering the workforce after taking time off. The ability to forge a unique path with occasional dips, detours, and even dead ends presents a better chance for fulfilment. Plus, a jungle gym provides great views for many people, not just those at the top. On a ladder, most climbers are stuck staring at the butt of the person above.”

From https://careercollaboration.files.wordpress.com

 “A jungle gym scramble is the best description of my career,” continues Sandberg. “I could never have connected the dots from where I started to where I am today…”

“When I graduated from college, I had only the vaguest notion of where I was headed… Throughout my childhood, my parents emphasized the importance of pursuing a meaningful life. Dinner discussions often centered on social injustice and those fighting to make the world a better place. As a child, I never thought about what to be, but I thought a lot about what I wanted to do. …

I hoped to change the world…. I always believed I would work at a non-profit or in government. That was my dream. And while I don’t believe in mapping out each step of a career, I do believe it helps to have a long-term dream or goal. A long-term dream does not have to be realistic or even specific. It may reflect the desire to work in a particular field or to travel throughout the world.”

From http://megandimaria.blogspot.co.nz/

“With an eye on my childhood dream, the first job I took out of college was at the World Bank as a research assistant to Larry Summers, who was serving a term as chief economist… Larry then generously arranged for me to join an India health field mission to get a closer look at what the Bank actually did.

Flying to India took me into an entirely different world. The team was working to eradicate leprosy, which was endemic in India’s most remote and poorest regions. The conditions were appalling. Due to the stigma of the disease, patients were often exiled from their villages and ended up lying on dirt floors in awful places that passed for clinics.

Facts and figures could never have prepared me for this reality. I have the deepest respect for people who provide hands-on help to those in crises. It is the most difficult work in the world.”


From http://i294.photobucket.com

“I headed back to Cambridge. I tried to stay socially conscious by joining the highly unpopular Nonprofit Club. I also spent my second year studying social marketing – how marketing can be used to solve social problems.”

From http://cnm.tcd.ie

And then there was an interview with a high-level Silicon Valley executive who told Sandberg that “her company would never even consider hiring someone like me because government experience could not possibly prepare anyone to work in the tech industry.”

Undeterred, Sandberg contacted Eric Schmidt, who she had met several times while working at the Treasury, and who had just become CEO of a then relatively unknown company called Google.

The job Google offered her sounded less prestigious than those she had applied for elsewhere, but when she voiced this concern, Schmidt told her: “If you’re offered a seat on a rocket ship, you don’t ask what seat. You just get on.”

In other words, the potential for growth is all that matters, whether it’s in the company as a whole, within a division or team, or in a position with a high demand for your skills.

From http://www.sprint2thetable.com

I have seen these principles at work in my own career, though on a much smaller scale.

What about you?

Are you  climbing a career ladder
OR
swinging on a career jungle gym?

 


From http://www.excitations.com

THE END

Let’s look for way forward, not who to blame…

From http://off-campus.weebly.com/

As Michael Straczynski once said, “People spend too much time finding other people to blame, too much energy finding excuses for not being what they are capable of being, and not enough energy putting themselves on the line, growing out of the past, and getting on with their lives.”

Considering this general tendency, it does not come as a surprise when we see men being blamed for all problems affecting women.

image

From http://terry73.wordpress.com

Women do have lots of problems. As Sheryl Sandberg points out in her book Lean In, “the blunt truth is that men still run the world. This means that when it comes to making the decision that most affect us all, women’s voices are not heard equally…”

There are lots of reasons for this. “Women face real obstacles in the professional world, including blatant and subtle sexism… Too few workplaces offer the flexibility and access to child care and parental leave that are necessary for pursuing a career while raising children…”

Embedded image permalink

From https://twitter.com/workingmothers1

As the result, the whole society suffers: “The laws of economics and many studies of diversity tell us that if we tapped the entire pool of human resources and talent, our collective performance would improve. Legendary investor Warren Buffett has stated generously that one of the reasons for his great success was that he was competing with only half of the population. The Warren Buffetts of my generation are still largely enjoying this advantage. When more people get in the race, more records will be broken. And the achievements will extend beyond those individuals to benefit us all.”

Men in a boardroomFrom http://www.wemadeit.ca

When asked how American women could help those who experienced the horrors and mass rapes of war in places like Liberia, Leymah Gbowee (Liberian peace activist who won the 2011 Nobel Peace Prize) responded with four simple words: “More women in power.” We do need more strong women in power who don’t play victim, who don’t make themselves look pitiful, who don’t point fingers but stand firmly and deal with the problems.

Quote

From http://www.pinterest.com

We do need more women in leadership roles to improve conditions not only for all women and children, but for men as well.

“Why improving conditions for men?” one may ask.

As Sheryl Sandberg points out. “Today, despite all of the gains we have made, neither men nor women have real choice. Until women have supportive employers and colleagues as well as partners who share family responsibilities, they don’t have real choice. And until men are fully respected for contributing inside the home, they don’t have real choice either. Equal opportunity is not equal unless everyone receives the encouragement that makes seizing those opportunities possible. Only then can both men and women achieve their full potential. …

We all want the same thing: to feel comfortable with our choices and to feel validated by those around us. If more children see fathers at school pickups and mothers who are busy at jobs, both girls and boys will envision more options for themselves. Expectations will not be set by gender but by personal passion, talents, and interests.”

From http://cdn2.thegrindstone.com

Like Sheryl Sandberg, I hope my children will be able to choose what to do with their lives without external or internal obstacles slowing them down or making them question their choices. If they want to do the important work of raising children full-time, I hope they will be respected and supported by the society disregarding their gender. If they want to work full-time and pursue their professional aspirations, I hope they will also be respected and supported by the society disregarding their gender.

From http://d.gr-assets.com/

Let’s look for way forward, not who to blame…

😉

THE END

Be Assertive!

“It is a mistake to look at someone who is self assertive and say, “It’s easy for her, she has good self-esteem.” One of the ways you build self-esteem is by being self-assertive when it is not easy to do so. There are always times when self-assertiveness requires courage, no matter how high your self-esteem.”

Nathaniel Branden


From http://www.outstand.org

“Those of us who grew up in dysfunctional families may have never learned to communicate effectively in relationships. We may be passive and not advocate for ourselves, aggressive and attempt to run roughshod over others, or passive-aggressive and smile while sabotaging others behind their backs. No wonder we have so many problematic relationships and feel so isolated! In order to build healthy relationships, we must learn to be assertive – that is, to be clear, direct, and respectful in how we communicate.

From http://www.hrdqstore.com

Let’s have a closer look at these four communication styles:

1. PASSIVE COMMUNICATION is a style in which individuals have developed a pattern of avoiding expressing their opinions or feelings, protecting their rights, and identifying and meeting their needs. Passive communication is usually born of low self-esteem. These individuals believe: “I’m not worth taking care of.”

As a result, passive individuals do not respond overtly to hurtful or anger-inducing situations. Instead, they allow grievances and annoyances to mount, usually unaware of the build up. But once they have reached their high tolerance threshold for unacceptable behavior, they are prone to explosive outbursts, which are usually out of proportion to the triggering incident. After the outburst, however, they feel shame, guilt, and confusion, so they return to being passive.

Passive communicators will often:

– fail to assert for themselves
– allow others to deliberately or inadvertently infringe on their rights
– fail to express their feelings, needs, or opinions
– tend to speak softly or apologetically
– exhibit poor eye contact and slumped body posture

The impact of a pattern of passive communication is that these individuals:

– often feel anxious because life seems out of their control
– often feel depressed because they feel stuck and hopeless
– often feel resentful (but are unaware of it) because their needs are not being met
– often feel confused because they ignore their own feelings
– are unable to mature because real issues are never addressed

A passive communicator will say, believe, or behave like:

– “I’m unable to stand up for my rights.”
– “I don’t know what my rights are.”
– “I get stepped on by everyone.”
– “I’m weak and unable to take care of myself.”
– “People never consider my feelings.”


From http://maccorleymathieu.blogspot.co.nz

2. AGGRESSIVE COMMUNICATION is a style in which individuals express their feelings and opinions and advocate for their needs in a way that violates the rights of others. Thus, aggressive communicators are verbally and/or physically abusive. Aggressive communication is born of low self-esteem (often caused by past physical and/or emotional abuse), unhealed emotional wounds, and feelings of powerlessness.

Aggressive communicators will often:

– try to dominate others
– use humiliation to control others
– criticize, blame, or attack others
– be very impulsive
– have low frustration tolerance
– speak in a loud, demanding, and overbearing voice
– act threateningly and rudely
– not listen well
– interrupt frequently
– use “you” statements
– have piercing eye contact and an overbearing posture

The impact of a pattern of aggressive communication is that these individuals:

– become alienated from others
– alienate others
– generate fear and hatred in others
– always blame others instead of owning their issues, and thus are unable to mature

The aggressive communicator will say, believe, or behave like:

– “I’m superior and right and you’re inferior and wrong.”
– “I’m loud, bossy and pushy.”
– “I can dominate and intimidate you.”
– “I can violate your rights.”
– “I’ll get my way no matter what.”
– “You’re not worth anything.”
– “It’s all your fault.”
– “I react instantly.”
– “I’m entitled.”
– “You owe me.”
– “I own you.”


From http://empoweringwomenlawjournal.wordpress.com

3. PASSIVE-AGGRESSIVE COMMUNICATION is a style in which individuals appear passive on the surface but are really acting out anger in a subtle, indirect, or behind-the-scenes way. Prisoners of War (POWs) often act in passive-aggressive ways to deal with an overwhelming lack of power. POWs may try to secretly sabotage the prison, make fun of the enemy, or quietly disrupt the system while smiling and appearing cooperative.

People who develop a pattern of passive-aggressive communication usually feel powerless, stuck, and resentful – in other words, they feel incapable of dealing directly with the object of their resentments. Instead, they express their anger by subtly undermining the object (real or imagined) of their resentments. They smile at you while setting booby traps all around you.

Passive-Aggressive communicators will often:

– mutter to themselves rather than confront the person or issue
– have difficulty acknowledging their anger
– use facial expressions that don’t match how they feel – i.e., smiling when angry
– use sarcasm
– deny there is a problem
– appear cooperative while purposely doing things to annoy and disrupt
– use subtle sabotage to get even

The impact of a pattern of passive-aggressive communication is that these individuals:

– become alienated from those around them
– remain stuck in a position of powerlessness (like POWs)
– discharge resentment while real issues are never addressed so they can’t mature

The passive-aggressive communicator will say, believe, or behave like:

– “I’m weak and resentful, so I sabotage, frustrate, and disrupt.”
– “I’m powerless to deal with you head on so I must use guerilla warfare.”
– “I will appear cooperative but I’m not.”


From http://squareone-learning.com

4. ASSERTIVE COMMUNICATION is a style in which individuals clearly state their opinions and feelings, and firmly advocate for their rights and needs without violating the rights of others. Assertive communication is born of high self-esteem. These individuals value themselves, their time, and their emotional, spiritual, and physical needs and are strong advocates for themselves while being very respectful of the rights of others.

Assertive communicators will:

– state needs and wants clearly, appropriately, and respectfully
– express feelings clearly, appropriately, and respectfully
– use “I” statements
– communicate respect for others
– listen well without interrupting
– feel in control of self
– have good eye contact
– speak in a calm and clear tone of voice
– have a relaxed body posture
– feel connected to others
– feel competent and in control
– not allow others to abuse or manipulate them
– stand up for their rights

The impact of a pattern of assertive communication is that these individuals:

– feel connected to others
– feel in control of their lives
– are able to mature because they address issues and problems as they arise
– create a respectful environment for others to grow and mature

The assertive communicator will say, believe, or behave in a way that says:

– “We are equally entitled to express ourselves respectfully to one another.”
– “I am confident about who I am.”
– “I realize I have choices in my life and I consider my options.”
– “I speak clearly, honestly, and to the point.”
– “I can’t control others but I can control myself.”
– “I place a high priority on having my rights respected.”
– “I am responsible for getting my needs met in a respectful manner.”
– “I respect the rights of others.”
– “Nobody owes me anything unless they’ve agreed to give it to me.”
– “I’m 100% responsible for my own happiness.”


From http://mindfulcogitations.blogspot.co.nz

Assertiveness allows us to take care of ourselves, and is fundamental for good mental health and healthy relationships.”

(From The Four Basic Styles of Communication)


From http://www.how-to-assertive.com

Here are 10 assertiveness tips and techniques that you can put into practice:

1. Clear Communication
When communicating your opinion, complaint, etc ensure that you are being direct, clear and precise.

2. Take Responsibility
Don’t shy away from the point you want to make or action you want to take. Commit to it and take full responsibility. For example, say “I think” rather than “we think”.

3. Don’t apologise when you don’t need to
Don’t apologise before of after you talk to someone about something as again this takes away any strength or emphasis from you.

4. Use strong verbal and body language
Use the correct tone of voice and body language when talking. For example, don’t talk into yourself or have a tremble in your voice. Maintain eye contact and use a solid strong voice but with normal volume.

5. Are you being listened to?
Check with people that they have listened to what you have said by encouraging them to summarise your opinion, complaint, request, etc. Don’t allow people to make excuses for having misunderstood and stick to what you’ve said.

6. Get out your comfort zone
Don’t avoid particular people or situations that you don’t feel confident in. In fact push yourself into as many of these situations as possible and practise your new assertive self. If there are certain people you find difficult to approach then walk up to them confidently and smile at them before you start talking.

7. Stick to the facts
Being assertive doesn’t mean making things up to support your opinions, complaints, etc. You should stick to the facts and not exaggerate. It’s good to be seen as objective rather than emotional.

8. Keep it objective
When you’re in a difficult situation with people don’t make personal references. For example, don’t say “I find you really annoying”, say instead “Please refrain from talking to me like that.”

9. Observe assertive role models
Watch assertive people and pick up words, tones and body language that you think makes them successful at being assertive. Keep a list of these attributes and add them to your portfolio.

10. Reward yourself
Each time you’re successfully assertive, note this down and reward yourself. Try and exhibit your new assertive behaviour so much that people start giving you feedback. This is your ultimate reward! Also, don’t get disheartened when you’re not successful. Just realise where you went wrong and correct it next time.

by Rebekah Fensome

 

From http://peraltasecondstep.wordpress.com

THE END

The Man in a Suit

ManFrom Pooky’s Poems

What do you see
When you look at me?
Asked the husband of one,
And father of three.
Do you see a good husband?
The love of a Dad?
Or grey hair,
And wrinkles,
And fun times not had?
Or a man in a shirt
And a tie and a suit,
Who’s cold blooded and vengeful
In his hot pursuit,
Of a spot at the top,
And a big leather chair,
Leaving no time for family,
Though their picture will stare
Back at him daily,
From its bright silver frame,
As it sits on his desk,
By the plaque with his name.
The picture grows old,
And the children do too,
And the wife grows more distant,
The marriage is through,
As he’s married to work,
Not his wife and his kids,
And his love of his work,
Means he gradually bids
Farewell to the things
In life that he should love.
Less responsive to family,
Than calls from above.
But he thinks that he does it
To make things at home better,
He thinks that each phone call,
Each meeting, each letter,
Are helping his prospects of
A better job,
And that each increased pay cheque
Will help him to bob,
In a tide of big bills
And of school fees and fares.
And as he works on,
He does so unaware,
That the more that he tries,
To help those back at home,
The more likely he is,
To end up alone.
He awakes from his daydream,
This man in a suit,
Considering life,
As he made the commute,
From his workplace to home,
And as he arrives,
He makes a decision,
And with gusto decides,
That his wife and his kids
Are important to him,
And with less pay it might be
A bit harder to swim,
In the huge tide of bills,
But what does he care
If it means that his loved ones,
Know that he’s there.
Knows that he loves them,
And love him in return,
They’ll love him regardless
Of how much he earns.
And so from that day,
He determines that he
Will be a husband of one,
And a father of three,
Not a man in a suit
And a shirt and a tie,
That’s just Monday to Friday
But the rest of the time,
He’ll devote to his loved ones,
Now he’s home with a smile,
And he cuddles his wife,
For the first time in a while.
She knows that he’s changed
Though he says not a word
And from that day forever,
His family come first.

By PookyH

Family
From One Big Happy Family

THE END

Do you need a career change?

“Celebrating another birthday doesn’t mean you’re stuck in a line of work you chose decades earlier. Age and experience can be assets in a new field.”

 Daniel Bukszpan

Change1From Finding Work You Love

If you have passion for what you do, your day will not seem like work at all. But what if you don’t have that passion anymore? If you’re bored, burned-out, or your job just isn’t doing it for you anymore, there’s a good chance you’re ready for a change.

Older generations likely worked in one job or industry for their entire career and then retired. Changing careers was frowned upon. The millenniums, X, Y, and boomer generations are different. They will change-it-up when feeling discontented, bored or “been there, done that.” It is not unusual for these generations to undergo two-three-four re-careers — or reinventions over the course of one’s working life.

If you’re certain that you are ready to embark on a career change, this is what you need to think about:

What do I want?

Start by doing a self-assessment of your core values, how you like to work, and what you’d be compelled to do even if you never got paid. List the achievements of which you are most proud. These are not necessarily job-oriented achievements. List your causes and your hobbies, as well. When you do something that makes you proud, it is often something you like to do. Your list gives you a good idea of your skill sets and interests.

Do I have what it takes?

You need to know what is important in this new field, and what skills and experience are required. Then you need to figure out if you’ve got what it takes. Take stock of your intrinsic assets. We all have a unique combination of assets such as our personality, skill sets, abilities, and experiences.

People with some gray in their hair may be apprehensive about what’s out there. Will they be written off because of ageism? Will they have to take a big step down in salary? Will they find anything stimulating?

“If you’re 50 or 60, you have built up very valuable skills,” said Newport, who is in his early ‘30s and an assistant professor of computer science at Georgetown University. “Don’t discount them.” When you’re plotting your next career move, “work backwards from your skills. Ask yourself: What skills do I have and how rare and valuable are they? The intersection of your rare skills and what interests you is what should start your job hunt, not introspection about what you’re ‘meant to do.’”

Older adults bring qualities to the table that make them well-suited to diverse jobs in different sectors. Many startup companies are looking for experienced people. In fact, many startup companies are being launched by people over 50 who have developed business ideas based on their experiences in the field.

Is this career a good fit?

Make an effort to learn as much as you can about job prospects, work-life balance, salary estimates and required skills.

(Adapted from
How To Start Thinking About A Career Change
and
The Career Tip To Follow Your Passion: Is It Bunk? )

Work-Life-BalanceFrom 5 Keys to Successfully Maintaining a Healthy Work-Life Balance

* * *

THE END

Emotional Intelligence (EQ) for happy life and successful career

EQ1From IZquotes

* * *

communication_j how goodFrom Communicating with Confidence

We probably all know people, who are really good listeners. No matter what kind of situation we’re in, they always seem to know what to say – and how to say it – so that we’re not offended or upset. They’re caring and considerate, and even if we don’t find a solution to our problem, we usually leave feeling better.

We probably also know people who are masters in managing their emotions. They don’t get angry in stressful situations. Instead, they have the ability to look at a problem and calmly find a solution.

People like this have a high degree of emotional intelligence. They know themselves very well, and they’re also able to sense the emotional needs of others.

Emotional intelligence (EQ) is recognised by many psychologists as more important than IQ for the success or failure in life and career.

EQ

Components of the Daniel Goleman emotional intelligence model

What is Emotional Intelligence?

Emotional intelligence is the ability to recognize your emotions, understand what they’re telling you, and realize how your emotions affect people around you. Emotional intelligence also involves your perception of others: when you understand how they feel, this allows you to manage relationships more effectively.

There are 5 key characteristics of Emotional Intelligence:

  1. Self-Awareness – ability to understand your own emotions.
  2. Self-Regulation – ability to control emotions and impulses.
  3. Motivation – ability to defer immediate results for long-term success.
  4. Empathy –  ability to identify with and understand the wants, needs, and viewpoints of those around you.
  5. Social Skills – ability to communicate effectively with others, build and maintain relationships.

 Dad's loveFrom ’10 Tips for Dad’s – By Men For Men’

How can you help your child to develop emotional intelligence?

Relationship with you provides the first step to developing emotional intelligence for your child:

1. Hold your infant when he/she wants you and respond quickly to his/her cries.

2. Calm your own anxiety. It has been confirmed that parents’ touch, voices, and movements can either soothe a child or stimulate anxiety.

3. Accept and acknowledge your child’s emotions. Teach children that they can’t choose their feelings, but they can — and must — choose what to do with those feelings.

4. Demonstrate empathy. Your empathy teaches your child that his/her emotional life is not dangerous, is not shameful, and in fact is universal and manageable. Your child realises that he/she is not alone and learns to understand and accept his/her feelings.

5. Don’t shame your child when he/she gets hurt (e.g. don’t tell your son ‘big boys don’t cry’) and avoid repressing emotions. Repressed feelings don’t fade away, as feelings that have been freely expressed do. Repressed feelings are trapped and looking for a way out. Because they are not under conscious control, they can develop into nightmares and nervous tics.

6. Active Listening helps to diffuse intense feelings. Accepting his/her feelings and reflecting them does not mean you agree with them or endorse them. You’re only showing him/her that you understand.

7. Help your child to come up with an appropriate way to solve a problem or deal with an upsetting issue or situation.

8. Handling anger constructively is one of the most important skills you can give your child. When he/she’s angry, look under the anger for the hurt or fear that his/her anger is defending against. Use words, not force. Don’t let anger escalate. Breathe so you can keep listening.

11. Model emotional intelligence. What your child sees you do is what he/she will do. Do you start snapping at people when you’re under stress? Have minor tantrums when things go wrong? Can you stay calm during emotionally charged discussions? Do you empathize when feelings are expressed? So will your child.

12. Don’t let your own feelings to get out of hand. If you end up screaming, your children just feel picked on. They learn nothing useful and much that is harmful about how to handle their own feelings when they watch you indulge yours at their expense.

13. Don’t undermine your child’s emotional self-knowledge. Respect his/her feelings about others. If he/she feels uncomfortable letting Uncle Herman hug him/her, teach him/her to shake hands. Affirm your child’s ability to trust his/her own feelings. Children need to make their own decisions about relationships from an early age.

Sounds scary? Emotional intelligence is not my strongest point and although I put a lot of effort into improving my communication skills and emotion control, I still have plenty of room for improvement. However I try to avoid being a perfectionist. I believe that if I get 90% of these points right, it is better than nothing. And when I get something wrong or lose control of my own emotions, I do apologise to my children for hurting their feelings and use that as an opportunity to discuss how we can help each other in controlling our emotions and expressing ourselves in a more appropriate way. I think it is good for children to see that adults are also not perfect, that adults have emotions too and controlling emotions can be challenging for them as well. None of us is perfect and improving yourself is a life-long journey.

fathers-day-dad-with-kidsFrom Who is your daddy?

Online Resources on Emotional Intelligence: