Integrate the left and right brain of your child
- Understand the differences between the left and right brain.
The left brain loves order and is logical, literal, linguistic, and linear. The right brain is holistic and nonverbal, sending and receiving signals that allow us to communicate. It cares about the big picture, the meaning, and the feel of an experience and specializes in images, emotions, and personal memories.
- Acknowledge the importance of emotions.
Emotions are absolutely crucial if we are to live meaningfully, but we don’t want them to completely rule our lives.
- Connect with the right brain.
Use nonverbal signals like physical touch, empathetic facial expressions, a nurturing tone of voice, and nonjudgmental listening to appeal to a child's right brain. For example, if your child feels hurt because she thinks you're favoring their younger sister over them, you may start addressing it by first acknowledging their feelings and using a nurturing tone of voice.
- Redirect with the left brain.
After connecting with the right brain or acknowledging your child's feelings, redirect with the left brain through logical explanation and planning. This allows them to use both sides of their brain in an integrated, coordinated way. For example, after you've acknowledged your child's feelings of hurt because she thought you were favoring their younger sister more, you could explain that you're trying your best to give them fair treatment and that it is not your intention to make them feel that way.
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