Emotion coaching is an approach that focuses on helping children understand and manage their emotions effectively.

The concept of emotion coaching was popularised by psychologist John Gottman and his colleagues through their research on emotional intelligence and relationships.

The main principles of emotion coaching are as follows:

  • Emotional awareness: Emotion coaches encourage individuals to be aware of their emotions and to recognise their feelings as valid and natural responses to various situations.
  • Empathy: Coaches show empathy and understanding towards the individual’s emotions, acknowledging their feelings without judgment or criticism.
  • Emotional validation: Rather than dismissing or minimizing someone’s emotions, coaches validate them, helping the person feel understood and accepted.
  • Labelling emotions: Coaches help individuals put a name to their feelings, which can be empowering and allows them to communicate their emotions more effectively.
  • Emotional regulation: Emotion coaching supports individuals in developing strategies to regulate their emotions in a healthy and constructive way. This may include teaching relaxation techniques, problem-solving skills, or coping strategies.
  • Communication: Emotion coaching emphasises open and supportive communication, where individuals feel safe expressing their emotions and discussing their feelings.