How to think when your child is envious?
That one's children cannot be happy for others is a marked and forbidden thought. The thought of one's children being jealous can create a lot of anxiety. Will she always be like this? What is it due to?
After Christmas, it can be especially relevant to think about jealousy in children, regardless of whether you have experienced it yourself or not. We have taken a closer look at what is happening in our little ones.
What is envy in children?
Jealousy in children is a natural part of their development, and it can arise for various reasons. Children may feel envy towards their peers due to various factors, such as material things, attention from adults or achievements. Understanding and dealing with children's jealousy is of course important. In this text, we will explore the reasons behind jealousy in children and offer strategies to respond and manage these feelings in a constructive way.
It can also be related to children's self-esteem and self-confidence. If a child feels insecure or inadequate, they may more easily experience envy towards others.
What causes envy?
Jealousy in children can occur for several reasons. One of the main reasons is children's natural desire to be validated and noticed. When they see others getting more attention or rewards, feelings of jealousy may arise. It can also be related to children's self-esteem and self-confidence. If a child feels insecure or inadequate, they may more easily experience envy towards others.
Material things are a common source of envy among children. If a child sees that others have toys, clothes or other items that they lack, it can trigger feelings of envy. Parents and guardians play an important role in dealing with this type of envy by fostering an environment where children feel loved and accepted regardless of material assets. This is difficult and not something you just do in one fell swoop. The watchword here is long-term.
Another factor that can contribute to envy is achievement and recognition. If a child sees others receiving praise for their achievements, such as good grades or athletic success, it can generate jealous feelings. It is important to emphasize to children that each individual has their own strengths and that success is not always measured by external achievements.
How to deal with an envious child?
In order to deal with jealousy in children, it is crucial to first create an open and safe communication environment. Children should feel that they can express their feelings and that their experiences are taken seriously. Listening actively and empathetically is fundamental to understanding the root of the child's jealousy, not just putting down the feeling immediately and dismissing it as wrong.
Parents and guardians can also do a lot to promote children's views on equality and justice. By creating clear expectations and rules and following them consistently, you can reduce the risk of jealousy. Encouraging children to share and be generous with each other can also help create a positive atmosphere. Again, long-term is the keyword!
Empathy and compassion
Teaching children about empathy is an important part of dealing with jealousy. By empathizing with others' feelings and understanding their perspective, children can develop a greater understanding of why others may receive more attention or have more material things. Parents and teachers can use stories and examples to illustrate the importance of putting yourself in other people's shoes.
Fostering a culture of cooperation instead of competition can also reduce envy. By emphasizing the importance of working together for common goals and rewarding team efforts, children can learn to cooperate instead of constantly comparing themselves to each other.
By empathizing with others' feelings and understanding their perspective, children can develop a greater understanding of why others may receive more attention or have more material things.
If jealousy doesn't go away?
If jealousy persists despite these strategies, it may be helpful to seek professional help. A school psychologist, child psychologist or family counselor can offer support and tools to manage and overcome jealousy. If you are ever worried about your child, don't hesitate!
In conclusion, it is normal for children to experience envy, and it is part of their social and emotional development. By creating a supportive and empathetic environment, promoting equality and cooperation, and teaching children about empathy, adults can play a central role in helping children manage and overcome these feelings in a positive way.
By emphasizing the importance of working together for common goals and rewarding team efforts, children can learn to collaborate instead of constantly comparing themselves to each other.