Help him identify and name his emotions. Check in on how he is feeling to build emotional literacy.
Allow your son to express his emotions. Don’t judge or rush to try to fix things, or try to distract. Let him feel what he is feeling. It’s okay, emotions pass (even quicker if they are allowed to be felt).
Listen and then validate his feelings. For example, “Sounds like you feel angry, I get it” or “that must have been hard for you”.
Help him feel safe enough to share and talk with you about his feelings. Let him know that it’s okay to show sadness and vulnerability. Boys are allowed to cry and to ask for cuddles.
In an age-appropriate way, occasionally share your own difficult feelings and challenges with your son. In this way he’ll learn that it’s okay to feel anger, fear and sadness.
Allow him to see (and hear) you empathize with the emotions and lives of others. Don’t be too quick to judge others and their experience. Try to understand how other people could feel. Model this and he will learn it from you.