The ladder of emotions game to change a child's behavior

The ladder of emotions game to change a child's behavior

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When the child breaks out in an uncontrolled tantrum, or gets angry with his friend and hits him ... when the child is unable to cope with a problem and becomes blocked, or feels such frustration that he explodes into a violent scream ... the problem is in the absence of self-control. And there, of course, emotions are running around.

Emotional intelligence is so important that it can determine a child's behavior. And it is that often, a violent or aggressive child is because he is not able to handle his emotions. How to help you? Use the game of the ladder of emotions to teach your child to recognize what he feels, and change, incidentally, some unwanted behavior.

This technique or game, linked to emotional intelligence, It is ideal for children who find it more difficult to achieve self-control of their emotions. Emotions, yes, those mechanisms or impulses that often get out of control of our actions, that make us feel fear, sadness, anger ... or joy, these mechanisms have a control (like video consoles), and your child can learn to handle it .

The game of the ladder of emotions, (based on the Train of Emotions technique of the psychopedagogue Javier Sobrino González), It is ideal for the little ones, but can also be used with older children. It consists of the following: You need 4 sheets of paper. It does not matter if they are colored or white. The important thing is that you write in large letters in each of them the following:

1. What happens

2. What I think

3. What I feel

4. What I do

5. The result

- You place the leaves in the shape of a ladder on the ground. The first step would be the page where it says 'What happens'. The last one, 'the result'. You ask your child, after he has performed one of those behaviors that you want him to change, to stand on the first rung and answer the questions. In the first case, what happened?

- Then you must 'climb' the next step. In this case you must answer the following question: what do I think?

- The third step will force you to delve into your emotions: how do you feel?

- Then, on the next step, you will analyze your actions: what have you done?

- And finally, with the last step, you will reflect on the benefits or harm that your action caused: have you achieved something with that behavior? When you finish, you must go back up the ladder but changing from the second rung the thought ... what would have happened if instead of thinking this, you had thought this other ...?

Life is itself the construction of a skyscraper created based on elections. You are the architect of your emotions. You choose which option to take. We must teach our son to make the right decision. And this game is very useful. Let's take an example:

- Your son wants a game for the console but it is very expensive. You tell him that he has to ask for it for his birthday, but of course, his birthday is still many months away ... Your son now has two options:

a) He gets angry and cries. He screams and doesn't accept that you don't buy the game from him anymore. It even threatens you. And you punish him.

b) He gets sad, because he wanted the game now, but accepts it and looks forward to his birthday, marking how many days are left on the calendar.

Most children will probably end up choosing option a. There you are to explain to him, once the tantrum is over, that with the option a he does not achieve anything. It is time to use the ladder game, so that he can see for himself what he is feeling at that moment and why option b is better.

How to put the ladder of emotions game into practice in this case? This would be the procedure. You must first respond to what happened (let's say you opted for option a):

1. What's up? 'That my parents don't want to buy the game for me.'

2. What do you think? 'I don't understand why they don't want to buy the game from me.'

3. How do you feel? 'I am very angry'.

4. And what have you done? 'Scream and cry'.

5. And what have you achieved? 'My parents have gotten angry and punished me.' Are you feeling better now? 'Do not'

Now you explain to your son what would the answers have been if I had opted for option b, so that the behavior would have been more rational:

1. What's up? 'My parents don't want to buy the game for me now.'

2. What do you think? "It makes me very angry because I love him now, but I understand that it can't be and I'll have to wait a bit."

3. How do you feel? 'I'm sad because they can't buy it now, although they have promised me that they will give it to me for my birthday, and that also excites me.'

4. What have you done? 'To think that there are only three months left until they buy it for me. I'm going to write down how many days are left on the calendar. '

5. And what have you achieved? 'Now I don't feel so angry anymore.'

It is just an example, but it can be used in many other cases. In fact, this system serves children of all ages, including teenagers. Do you dare to try?

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