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Raising Mentally Healthy Kids with Michelle Nietert

Oct 5, 2021

With our children often connecting over screens, we have a felt need in our culture to help them develop relational intelligence.  In this episode, I’m speaking with two experts on that subject, John Trent and Dewey Wilson, authors of the book The Relationally Intelligent Child: Five Keys to Helping Your Kids Connect Well with Others. We discuss what relational intelligence is and why it’s so important, four elements that are essential to relational intelligence, and the power of giving your kids freedom to fail.

Key points from our conversation:

🤝 Relational intelligence is an applicational construct. It’s the ability to learn, understand, and apply the relationship skills that God has equipped us with.

🔗 Relational intelligence helps relieve social anxiety by equipping children with skills that give them the confidence to connect with others more easily.

👨‍👩‍👧 Children with secure attachment feel protected by their caregivers and a though they have a safe space to process emotions.

🏠 When a child has a secure attachment at home, it gives them the confidence to fearlessly explore their world. As their world expands, they will fail, but resilience is built through “failing forward.”

💪 Kids take stress cues from their parents. If we want our kids to be resilient, we must model resiliency. Let your kids know you’re struggling and show them how to fail well.

🤩 Brighten your eyes when you see your kids. Only 7% of communication is verbal, so your reactions and tone matter.

🧠 The area of the brain responsible for the evaluation of consequences doesn’t mature until the mid-20s – 30s, but the area responsible for risk is active in adolescence.

Resources mentioned:

The Blessing: Giving the Gift of Unconditional Love and Acceptance
FREE empathetic listening printable

Connect with John: website | Instagram | Facebook
Connect with Dewey: website | Instagram | Facebook

You can find more resources about mental health, parenting, and coping with anxiety at

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