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Offering in-person therapy in Westchester or online sessions for all New York residents.

Emotional regulation for parents

Managing your emotions can help your child succeed in life. Emotional regulation is crucial for effective parenting.

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Overview

When a parent does not regulate his or her feelings, children sense it. Over time, emotional dysregulation can erode the self-esteem and emotional health of children in the family.

The #1 factor in your children’s success

All good parents want their children to do well and be happy. Many invest significant money, time, and effort to ensure their children engage in several extracurricular activities. Almost none of those activities can guarantee life-long happiness or fulfillment.

As a parent, you are the most important player when it comes to the long-term happiness of your children. Your child watches and mirrors your actions. Your level of emotional regulation and behavioral responses will be emulated.

What emotional regulation is (and what it’s not)

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Emotional regulation is the ability to handle your feelings in a healthy and constructive manner. It involves identifying, understanding, and managing your emotions, and taking on challenges with strength and resilience.

Emotional regulation means acknowledging that life does not always go the way you planned. Instead, you learn how to acknowledge your emotions and react calmly and reasonably when met with inevitable challenges

Emotional regulation is critical for parents

Emotional dysregulation is an extremely difficult mental and physical state for those experiencing it themselves. And other people can be severely affected by your emotional outburst, in the short- or long-term. Children, particularly, are entirely reliant on you to give them a blueprint for how to interact with the world. If your reactions to life’s challenges involve extreme rage, deep despair, or any other unhealthy response, they will see that as the correct way to act. These behavioral issues can stay with them for their entire life.

By exhibiting emotional regulation, you create a model of appropriate behavior for your children. This model will equip them with the social and emotional skills to take on life’s challenges and accomplish everything they set their minds to.

What does emotional dysregulation do to parents and children?

As a parent, you likely face constant stressors both at work and in your personal life, making the demands of raising children significant. If you struggle to regulate your emotions effectively, you are at a higher risk of chronic stress, burnout, and depression. Consequently, your children may adopt unhealthy coping strategies, impacting their physical and mental health and hindering their ability to form emotionally healthy relationships. Over time, these challenges can spill over into their professional lives, affecting their ability to manage stress in academic and work environments, particularly when dealing with multiple stressors simultaneously.

Regulating your emotions delivers benefits for you and your kids

By learning to manage your emotions, you’ll be better equipped to think clearly, make sound decisions, and respond healthily both emotionally and behaviorally. This not only enhances your physical and emotional well-being but also sets a positive example for your children.

You’re also likely to be more empathetic towards your children, enabling you to understand and meet their needs effectively. Mastering your emotions will make you a better parent, fostering a positive and secure parent-child relationship.

Tips for becoming a more emotionally regulated parent

Better regulating your emotional responses starts with improving your self-awareness. By taking the time to notice how your unexamined feelings trigger automatic behaviors, you can begin to develop self-insight and strategies to manage your emotions more effectively. Allow yourself to slow down and be present in the moment. Providing yourself with the nurturing you need can help you maintain composure. Good self-care, clear communication, effective coping strategies, and a commitment to enhancing your relationship with your child are the cornerstones of effective parenting.

Sometimes, the best thing you can do is reach out for help

Even the most well-intentioned parents often lack all the skills they need to parent as effectively as they’d like. Seeking out guidance and support acknowledges that everyone can benefit from additional tools and strategies. Getting help to regulate your emotional responses is likely the most valuable investment you can make for yourself, your children, and your whole family.

Reach out today

Emotional regulation stands as a cornerstone of effective parenting, shaping the emotional landscape of our children’s futures. As we navigate this journey, the wisdom of professionals like Dr. Mijin Kim, Licensed Psychotherapist, and Creative Arts Therapist, illuminates the path forward. Dr. Kim’s expertise empowers you to cultivate healthier emotional environments within your family. Take the first step towards a brighter tomorrow for both yourself and your family and reach out to Dr. Kim today.