These Social-Emotional Skills Will Help You Lead A Healthy Digital Life

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In times when digital technologies are widely available, children are on their screens at increasingly younger ages and for longer periods of time. In fact, according to the American Academy of Pediatrics, children spend an average of seven hours a day in front of screens using digital devices. Learning social-emotional skills is vital for maintaining a healthy digital life. Because social media and the internet are here to stay. We might as well arm ourselves to preserve our mental health. These skills can help guide not just children but adults too. Here are 5 social-emotional skills you must equip yourself and your children with:

Self Awareness
This is the ability to examine our own behaviours and feelings. This can help us recognize how technology might be affecting us. Not only do we become aware if there is a negative effect but we can work on recognizing it. This includes spending too much time on social media, questioning your self-worth, and feeling emotionally drained.

This is our ability to understand how someone else feels. Empathy is essential to maintain healthy relationships, both online and offline. Often when interactions are not face-to-face, it is easy to forget that the person on the other side of the screen is a human being too. Just like we would want others to understand our emotions, we must offer them the same understanding.

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Self Regulation
Our impulses can easily override our decision-making, especially when it is an online platform. Commenting, sharing, hitting that like button when it is just thought of as a button. It is vital to evaluate the accuracy of the information and the repercussions of sharing misinformation. Self-regulation can also help in making sure we do not hurt someone’s sentiments online, just because we do not see them as a person on the other side of the screen.

Relationship Skills
We must be able to establish and maintain healthy and meaningful relationships with others. This includes being able to communicate clearly, offer a listening ear, cooperation, and resolve conflicts in a healthy manner. It is also the ability to resist negative pressure and provide support for one another.

Responsible Decision-Making
This is our ability to make positive choices and take responsibility for the outcomes. Not only the positive but also the negative. This is often difficult online when the repercussions of our actions are not immediately visible. We must be able to analyze the situation and identify the problem. We should be able to find logical solutions and later reflect on our actions.

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