Parenting 101 – EQ is as important as IQ, if not more

I’ve just finished listening to one of the episodes of Dr. Rajini Sarvananthan’s podcast on BFM. Dr. Rajini is the best paediatrician in the country, focusing on child development. If you want to meet her, your child would have to have a serious problem, otherwise, you will be on a 1-2 years waitlist. So in a way, it’s good news if your child does not need to see her.

But you know sometimes you just want to get advice from an expert about what’s best for your child in terms of development because you want the best for your child. Thankfully, BFM interviewed her before, multiple times and the interviews are recorded on BFM’s podcast. You can listen to all her interviews here to get some tips. She should really consider writing a book.

The episode that I listened to was a really good one, the title is “Raising Resilient Children”.

Some advice that I find useful are as follows:

  1. In the first 5 years of your child, you need to focus on the 4 Cs – Competence, Confidence, ability to Connect and building on their Character
  2. In terms of competence – you would want your child to be independent in terms of looking after themselves which include feeding, toiletting skills, dressing, wearing shoes and more importantly, to be able to apply those basic skills in different settings, not just at home but also at other places such as day care centre, grandparents’ home, someone else’s home etc
  3. Social competencies which include basic communication skills are also important, i.e. you would want your child to be able to communicate their needs through signs, gestures and to be able to do it in different community settings. When your child is able to do it in different settings, indirectly it builds your child’s confidence
  4. We also need to focus on building our child’s connection – within and beyond family, i.e. be able to connect with other people around them which indirectly builds up their confidence, resilience and independence. Within family, you want them to know that home is not just a physical secure environment but also an emotional secure environment so that your child will continue to share and talk to you even during teenagers and beyond.

Basically what she’s trying to emphasize is the need to hone our child’s EQ as much as his IQ early on so that he can survive in the real world when he grows up. With automation and AI taking our jobs, I too believe that these are the essential life skills that a child needs to acquire and hold on to.

If you want to know more, listen to her podcast and other episodes. It’s the closest you can get to meeting her.

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