3 pages/≈1650 words
Emotional Development: Recognizing & Interpreting Emotions (Research Paper Sample)
Development of Emotions
Recognizing and Interpreting Emotions
Emotional Attachment by Bowlby's Theory
Stages of Attachment
Factors Promoting Attachment
Effects of Attachment
Importance of Emotional Attachment
Name: Mwaura L. Wanjiro
Reg No: E35S/NKU/12150/2013
Course: Bachelor of Education
Unit: GPS 200- Developmental Psychology
Topic: Emotional Development
Submission date: 12th July, 2016
* Emotional Intelligence
2 Development of Emotions
3 Recognizing and Interpreting Emotions
4 Emotional Attachment by Bowlbyâ€™s Theory
5 Stages of Attachment
6 Factors Promoting Attachment
7 Effects of Attachment
8 Importance of Emotional Attachment
Human growth and development is a complex process that involves a number of individual and communityâ€™s efforts. A child undergoes various growth and development stages before becoming an independent, mature and grown up adult. However, some of the development aspects cannot be seen by the naked eye since they are complex and require sociological and psychological approaches to understand them. The desire to nurture children to become adults requires a lot of efforts from parents, siblings, learning institutions and the society at large. In addition, an individualâ€™s efforts to learn and develop fully are also vital in shaping the personality of a person. Emotional development is a critical aspect of human growth process and plays vital roles in shaping the character and behavior of an individual (Schore, 2015). This paper explores the issue of emotional intelligence, Bowlbyâ€™s theory of attachment and and their importance in transforming the lives of individuals.
Emotional development refers to a series of changes that take place in individuals from childhood until they mature. These changes usually affect the way people interact with other and perceive themselves. Therefore, emotional development refers to the various stages of psychological development that enable people to understand themselves, those around them and their environment. The process of emotional development is highly influenced by a number of factors that originate either from an individual or the external environment. The development of an individualâ€™s emotions has significant impacts on the personality of that person and thus shapes the behavior and perception of an individual.
* Development of Emotions
Emotional development is a continuous process that takes place, especially during the early childhood years of an individual. Primary emotional development occurs from birth until when a child attains seven months. At birth it is common to observe the development of simple emotions among children and this includes the following (Malekpour, 2013). The first emotional development that is evident among children aged less than two months includes showing interest and contentment in some individuals and issues. In addition, such children also show distress and disgust regarding issues that do not excite them. Children aged between two years and seven months have the ability to show anger, sadness and joy and an individual can easily notice when each of these emotions emerges. In addition, they express fear and surprise at issues and people they are not familiar with and this means that their cognitive development has started to function properly (Schore, 2015). The development of these emotions is determined by the biological characteristics of individuals and they are common in all children of the same age provided they are normal. Secondary/complex/self-conscious emotions like guilty, shame envy and ride start to emerge when a child attains two years. These emotions have a significant impact on the self-image of individuals and start to emerge when an individual becomes aware of his or her personality, appearance and abilities.
* Recognizing and Interpreting Emotions
When children attain the age of three months they can learn a lot from the expressions on their motherâ€™s faces. They can identify and recognize sadness, anger, joy and happiness by looking at the expressions of their mothers. At this age they become happy when their mothers smile at them and from when they see their motherâ€™s sad faces (Malekpour, 2013). At between eight and ten moths children start to interpret more complex emotions and can identify what makes their parents happy or sad. They develop social referencing behavior and this enables them to know the behavior that their parents prefer. When they are twelve months they approach toys or play with items when a stranger smiles at them but avoids them and express fear when the person shows a different expression. They use the emotional intelligence of the people around them to evaluate the appropriateness of their behavior. This skill develops further when children attain the age of 2-3 years as their communication skills develop further. At five years of age they can realize and explain the causes of sadness or happiness in their friends (Schore, 2015). Between six to nine years children rely on both internal and external information to interpret emotions and people experience different emotions. In addition, they realize that each situation elicits a varying reaction from people and learn how to interpret and interpret different non verbal communication techniques.
* Emotional Attachment by Bowlbyâ€™s Theory
John Bowlby, a British child psychiatrist defines emotional attachment as the ability of a child to be attached to a parent and show affection to siblings and the people around it. Bowlby argues that emotional attachment between a mother and her child helps to improve the bond between them and keep the child close to its mother to increase its chances of survival. This scholar described emotional attachment as the strongest psychological connection between human beings. Bowlby argued that feeding intensifies and strengthens the emotional bond between a child and its care giver. People become very connected to those who are near them in times of stress and tribulations and this connection lasts for a very long time. According to Bowlby emotional attachment becomes stronger when individuals spend more time together and do things that help each other (Meins, 2013). He defined secure attachment as one when a child feels comfortable and playful when the mother is around. Insecure attachment occurs when the mother leaves a child alone and thus makes it uncomfortable and stressed.
* Stages of Attachment
There are four stages of emotional attachment and each occurs at a different time and age of an individualâ€™s life. The first stage (asocial stage) occurs between birth and 6 weeks and shows little or no reaction to the person close to it. The second stage consists of indiscriminate attachment and occurs between 6-7 months when children enjoy contact with other people but are very choosy and avoid strangers. They want to be the center of attention of everybody and would like to be carried all the time. The third stage (specific attachment) occurs between the ages of 7 months and the child shows protect when taken away from the mother or caregiver. They usually develop their first attachment and so they fear strangers who would like to take them away from their mothers (Meins, 2013). The last stage is called multiple attachments and here the child becomes comfortable and friendly with siblings, relatives, family friends and regular visitors. However, their attachment remains stronger with the people who are always close to them.
* Factors Promoting Attachment
There are various factors that promote attachment between children and their mothers and the people around them. First, when parents start to prepare about their new born babies they get so much attached to them. Long preparation in anticipation of the baby makes the mother to have a stronger attachment to the baby. Secondly, feeding the baby, stimulating it and responding to its needs also strengthen the attachment between the child and caregivers and mothers (Ainsworth, Blehar, Waters, & Wall, 2015). The child knows the individual is concerned about it and takes good care of it whenever it is in distress. Thirdly, constant contact with the baby keeps it warm and assures it of comfort and security. These aspects make the child and the person ta...
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