Words have power. Power makes you stronger and more independent. When you can communicate with words and language, both verbal and non-verbal, then other people know how to respond to your requests.
As a parent educator I am trained to assist parents, teachers and child care providers in methods
of communication with each other and specifically with children. It is always a joy to watch adults learn to name their emotions and express what they need from others.
Name Your Emotions
Most of us go through life knowing when we feel bad, but not really knowing how to describe the feelings to someone else. Just like an angry volcano going off, it usually starts way down inside from some unnamed, unmet need and we explode rather than determine what is really bothering us.
Words shape our society. The use of words shape our politics, shopping habits and belief systems. Many of us have become desensitized and close-minded to the words we here. While this is a protective system from overwhelm, it is not good when we don’t listen with our heart to our children.
As mature adults, it is our responsibility to teach our children to express what it is they really want. What do they need to feel whole again? By teaching them a vocabulary of emotions, we are not giving them permission to examine and announce every little twinge of emotion,looking for validation and attention.
We are saying it is okay to feel upset or happy or any of the thousands of other emotions and to look internally at what you really need. When we ignore or downplay our emotional needs, they don’t go away. They simply pop up in unexpected and sometimes inappropriate ways.
As you go through the list of “upset words” and “happy words” with your family, can you think of a time when you felt that emotion? Then can you reflect on what you needed right then? What would have brought you back into balance?
Listen to your children, without putting words in their mouths. You may have to describe or explain what the specific word means. Do not feel that you are talking above their level of consciousness. They will absorb what they need to comprehend and gain a deeper understanding. When they hear the word again, it will strike a familiar chord and it will eventually be added to their vocabulary. Please see the trilogy of my books called Raising Smart & Kind Kids to gain an understanding of the power of talking with your children.
Words Reflecting “Upset” Feelings
We all need to understand that there are many varying degrees of upset feelings that can be expressed in way that makes communication easier. It is empowering to be able to name your feelings. When you can accurately describe how you feel, then others can assist you in finding solutions.
Some such examples of feelings you would experience when your needs are not being met;
abandoned, accused, angry, annoyed, aggravated, alienated, ,alone, anxious, bored, confused, defeated, disconnected, difficult, disappointed, discouraged, disgusted, disrespected, doubt, embarrassed, frightened, frustrated, guilty, hate, hopeless, hurt inadequate, incapable, left out, miserable, put down, panicked, petrified, rejected, sad, stupid, unfair, unhappy, unloved, worried, worthless.
Words Reflecting “Happy” Feelings
Just as there are varying degrees of upset feelings, there are just as many different words to describe happy emotions. When you use the right words, then people know and understand where you are coming from and how to connect with you on a deeper level.
Some examples of positive and upbeat words to describe how you feel when you are in a state of happiness and your needs are being met might be:
Affectionate, confident, engaged, inspired, grateful, peaceful, excited, joyful, delighted, pleased, accepted, amused, appreciated, better, capable, comfortable, confident, encouraged, enjoy, excited, glad, good grateful, great, happy, hopeful, joyful, loved, pleased, proud, relieved, respected, satisfied, silly, fulfilled and content.
- Were you surprised at some of the emotions that came up when you recalled a specific incident that made you feel abandoned, unappreciated or even proud and respected?
- Can you see how using the correct name for an emotion will help you and your child to gain clarity in what is really needed to return to balance?
- Will you set a commitment to name your emotions using upset words and happy words?
Thank you for doing such an important job with the children of the world. Be sure to claim your free book on the use of encouraging words at http://www.UseEncouragingWords.com You will be glad you did.