Empathic kids and teens are super intuitive and sensitive. They feel everything. As adults, we know that some people feel awesome to be around – they totally support and uplift us! Yay!
We also know that there are some people that leave us feeling completely blah!
And let’s face it. In this fast-paced, Snapchattin’, Facebookin’ world, it’s not easy. Peer pressure is hard enough without adding the extra layer of being an empath. Here are a couple of tips that you can use to help your intuitive or empathic child:
1. Teach empathic kids to use emotions as indicators
This is something we’ve been doing in my house for a while. Of course, you’ll want to change the lingo a little bit, depending on the age of your child.
After your child spends time on the phone, texts, or hangs out with a friend, ask questions that go something like this:
How do you feel after talking to (name of friend)?
Did you laugh a lot?
Do you feel awesome now?
Did you talk about fun things that you both enjoy?
It seems like something is bothering you. Do you feel yucky after talking to (friend)?
This tip isn’t a cure-all, but it can start to teach empathic kids to be aware of their emotions. Sometimes, they don’t know why they feel yucky after playing with Suzy, they just know that they do. It’s OK for them to honor how they feel.
Slowly but surely, they can start to notice what makes them feel bad (like gossiping about other friends), and what makes them feel fantastic. Then, you can gently start encouraging them to follow their bliss and connect with uplifting friends.
2. Get them into the habit of taking a bath after school
School can be a draining place for empathic kids because of all the different people and energy. A nice, warm bath after school can help kids “wash off” all of the extra energy they’ve picked up during the day.
And you don’t need to go into a big explanation if you don’t want to. For younger kids, some bubble bath or a new bath toy can be enough incentive to get them to hop in the tub :)
For teens, letting them soak for a little while as they listen to their favorite music before starting their homework can help.
Tip: If you can’t get your little one into the tub, or they go to a babysitter’s house after school, simply changing into some fresh, comfy clothes can help.