Parents and teens are often at odds, but a new study says that those who are emotionally in sync with each other are also synced up mentally. According to Research Digest, brain neurons that fire in harmony also foster emotional harmony, and when teens and parents have neural similarity, children are more emotionally well adjusted.

The study was very small and only included 31 sets of parents and teens. Everyone participated in a six-minute brain scan that looked at the brain’s resting neural firing patterns and connection between 13 networks inside the mind. Subjects kept a mood diary, documenting their positive and negative attitudes over the course of two weeks. Teens also filled out a questionnaire assessing their emotional competence. From the study, researchers were able to determine that there was a correlation between neural and emotional synchronization.

“We propose that children’s neural connectome is a psychological representation at the neural systems level, resulting from shared experiences with their primary caregiver,” Research Digest reports of the authors’ findings. The publication points out that there is no evidence suggesting a cause and effect relationship.

Parents were around 43 years old, on average, and almost 90 percent of those included were moms. Teens were split about half and half of boys and girls, and averaged to be around 15 years old.

According to an article in the Harvard Business Review, emotional intelligence among kids is critical. The authors write that today’s teens are ill equipped to be competitive in the future, meaning they won’t excel as innovators, educators, or business professionals. In fact, things are so bad that “teens in the United States are in dire psychological straits,” the authors assert. The article explains that adolescent stress is spiking, and that attempted suicides of teens in the U.S. exceeds that in almost every other country. Not only that but teens in America don’t measure up to most countries in terms of academic success, but lead the way in violence, unplanned pregnancies, STDs, excessive drinking, obesity, depression and drug use.

However, not all is lost as children can be taught emotional intelligence. The article points to Yale, which offers coaching to students after they’ve taken tests gauging their emotional intelligence. Stanford offers college students an elective on interpersonal dynamics and self coaching, which teaches mindfulness and positive psychology.

The authors, who happen to be researchers at Yale, say there are some major benefits of teaching these skills, like better friendships, relationships with teachers, ability to handle conflict and scholastic improvement.

And the benefits will actually pay off financially, too. According to Harvard Business Review, every dollar spent teaching these skills will contribute $11 to society.

“American business leaders have the power and — if they but knew it — the pressing need to advocate for our nation’s schools to include the education of emotions,” the authors write. “We hope that leaders across the nation will work to change education to equip America to be competitive for the new global century well underway.”