The Role of Play in Emotional Regulation
With our world becoming more and more chaotic and unpredictable, it is increasingly important to have activities available that help children and adults alike, manage their emotions. Therefore, the role of play in emotional regulation is becoming increasingly important.
Playing to Manage Feelings
Play allows us to express and manage difficult feelings, letting us practice different ways to react in a safe and contained environment. Play can help children in understanding and managing big emotions such as anger, fear and anxiety in a mature and healthy way. For adults, playing can allow them to be more adept in communication and lessen the likelihood of getting overwhelmed when emotions start running high.
The Power of Make-Believe
Playing and make-believe can help both adults and children to escape reality, allowing them to try different scenarios and observe the consequences of their behavior. Play and imagination provide opportunities to generate ways of looking at difficult situations and of developing potential solutions.
Benefits of Play
The benefits of play go beyond emotional regulation and include:
- Improving Self-esteem: Playing helps to improve self-esteem by allowing for successful experiences and forgetting about failure.
- Improving Social Skills: Playing allows adults and children to learn safe and correct ways to interact with others.
- Problem-Solving: Playing activities provide an opportunity for both adults and children to explore ideas and reflect on how best to react to others.
In conclusion, play provides an opportunity both adults and children to explore their emotions, cope with big feelings, escape reality and improve social skills. Therefore, it is important to remember that play can be an invaluable tool in helping adults and children alike in emotional regulation.