8 EQ Checkpoints for your child: A Layman’s Guide

“Guard the doors of your temple, do not let anyone pollute it with their mess.”

Increasing number of researches are being conducted on what makes us happy. I decided to read up some famous books, hear some related talks, use my inherent wisdom and create my own simple checklist of HOW to monitor the Emotional Intelligence or, as we more commonly refer to it, the Emotional Quotient of your child. A simple act of monitoring and journaling your findings (I would suggest actual journaling, and not mentally memorizing, given the ever-shrinking lifespan of our memories!) should lead to some progress on how you can then, effectively use this information to guide them to better states of well-being, and their ability to take life heads-on!

Being very emotional is a great thing, till you realize it isn’t always serving you in a good way. And as life gets complicated, as eventually it must, not being emotionally healthy can quickly make you sink to depths of despair and misery. The key then, is to be emotionally healthy rather than be very emotional, and while changing your mental maps at a later age may prove difficult, I am optimistic that the results for children would be much better!

And now, more than ever, when every child is smart and talented, the differentiating factor on how good a life he/she would have may ultimately depend on how emotionally equipped he/she is!

A project must have a specific start and end time and 3 months seems like a decent time to build up a fair picture of my project’s subjects!

Without further ado then, here are the 8 pointers/checklists which you need to keep in mind for the next 3 months, as you pay attention to EVERYDAY, seemingly trivial occasions and events in your child’s life and note down noteworthy points in your cute, little diary (or the bland, office one)at least once a week. And no, you cannot rely on your memory for longer than that and do it every 2 weeks, please no!

  1. When occasions arose where they faced disappointments (a bad result, a loss at a match, a delay in the food arriving, tickets being full for the movie you were hoping to watch that very day-you can get hugely creative here),how much time did it take for them to pop back into a good mood? Was it minutes, hours or a whole day before that sulk disappeared? In other words, how RESILIENT are they?
  2. How are they dividing their time between work and chill? Alone and company? TV and sports? Studying and reading for pleasure?
  3. When the occasional guest arrives, do they sit with them for a while, annoying though that guest might be? Or do they scuttle off to their rooms?
  4. When the very guest makes an unkind remark or an uncalled-for advice, are they sporting enough to take it in jest? Or does it set their heart boiling and a quick retort follows?
  5. What random acts of kindness do they do on any random day! Are they polite to the house-help, do they bother to fetch a glass of water for you, do they crawl to a smaller space on the sofa to accommodate others?
  6. How generous are they with complimenting others? Are they able to hear praise of another without going red with anger/shame?
  7. Whenever they are reading a book, or watching TV, or talking to you, how closely are they paying attention, without getting distracted?
  8. Are they able to behave patiently while waiting in queues, waiting for food, waiting for someone else to finish their sentence before they can start theirs?

These then, are the 8 quick checks you can start doing on your child. I have not bothered to write down what behaviour on these is a green flag, and what isn’t, you are emotionally intelligent enough to figure that one out by yourself!