Helping Your Gifted Child Gain Emotional Freedom

April 3, 2012 at 2:02 pm Leave a comment

Has your child ever been overwhelmed by perfectionism, sensitivity, intensity, or other innate aspects of their giftedness? In her book, Emotional Freedom, Judith Orloff, M.D., energy psychiatrist and best selling author suggests ways we can bring peace and calm to our lives. Recently finding myself in physical and emotional chaos after what may have been the flu, I decided to take another look at Dr. Orloff’s book. It occurred to me that gifted children often have such an amplified awareness, parents are usually their constant model of how to interact with the world and deal with emotional disequilibrium. I know there were times when my own sensitivity and intensity caused chaos for my family. On the other hand, I know there were times when my own sensitivity and intensity brought greater awareness for other members of my family.

So what did I learn from Dr. Orloff about emotional freedom and parenting a gifted child?

* Dr. Orloff defines emotional freedom as “Increasing your ability to love by cultivating positive emotions and being able to compassionately witness and transform negative ones, whether they’re yours or another’s.”

* We need to make sure our children aren’t being ruled by negative emotion.

* “The power of love is the champion of emotional freedom. We must respect the voice within that says, ‘Honey, be kind to yourself. You are enough. You are beautiful.’ Compassion is in each of us: it is the ultimate answer.” Dr. Orloff believes that spirit of compassion will help all of us to become strong and joyful. What parents wouldn’t want that for themselves and their children?

* Dr. Orloff recounts a Native American story about what we “feed” will grow stronger. She suggests that we set our “intention to feed what is best and most beautiful within” ourselves in order to gain emotional freedom.

* Our bodies are depleted by emotional stress and our bodies are revived by calm. Dr. Orloff describes many ways to bring calm to our bodies.

As someone who has experienced the emotional stress brought on by my sensitivity and intensity, I would recommend Dr. Orloff’s book. She weaves together practical suggestions with stories from her life as well as those of her patients. One of my favorite parts of this book is when Dr. Orloff suggests that we let ourselves “feel the sensuality of inhaling and exhaling as air passes through your nostrils and chest like a cool breeze. Take pleasure in the breath’s hypnotic rhythm….With each slow, deep breath, feel yourself inhaling calm, sweet as the scent of summer jasmine… Emotional Freedom reminds me to not take the power of my breath for granted. How lovely it would be if highly sensitive and intense children could be taught ways to gain their own emotional freedom!

Entry filed under: Emotional Freedom, Gifted Children, Parenting Gifted Children. Tags: , , , , , , .

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