Listen With Your Heart When Communicating With Your Children

Photo by Benjamin Manley on Unsplash

The family is the most important unit in a child’s life. The people within the family are the very first people this child will engage with. From happy occasions, sad moments, to everything else in between, everything will be experienced first within the safe haven of the family unit. Thus, it is critical for parents like you to always keep communication lines open with your children.

You are their safe haven, the one they can go to during good times and bad times. Many people say that these ties seem to diminish when the kids get older, especially when they become teens. However, what many fail to realize is good communication is not built in a day. It is based on consistent, daily behavior that must be taken good care of so it would not decay. Consider the following communication tips to get your kids and teens to listen and to let them know you truly care. After all, you don’t just want to talk to them when there are only family issues to discuss. You want to be present in their lives, period.

Converse Even in the In-Betweens

Talking to your children doesn’t need to always be in a formal family meeting. Speak with them all the time, especially during the in-betweens when they are eating a snack, when you’re in the car, when you are out shopping, etc. There are many opportunities to casually talk with your children. It is during these relaxed times, when both your tongues are loose, that you can get them to open up.

You don’t always have to relate deeply and talk about major topics when you converse. Most times, talking about the most mundane things can seal that bond because your child will receive the assurance that they can go to you for absolutely anything and you will listen and not judge.

Set Aside Family Time

Apart from the normal daily in-between stuff, you really have to set time for your children and brand this as your family time. This way, your children will know that you have set time just for them because they matter to you. This doesn’t have to be fancy moments that need you to spend tons of money. You can do a game night wherein you just laugh around and talk to each other. It can also be a simple walk around the park or doing a barbecue at home.

These fun family times foster bonding and tell your children that you are a part of the same team. It is critical to do things as a family because it shows them they belong to a unit and it affirms that they are loved. When they feel this, they will be more inclined to open up because they trust and love you. They are so confident that you also feel the same way. Communication is something that must be nurtured.

Adjust Your Conversation Style

Although your kids all come from you, they don’t share the same personalities. One may like to talk in a lively manner with a lot of hand gestures. The other one may be more passive and just prefer to talk less. This is natural human behavior, so know that it has nothing to do with you if one child is just really quiet.

You must adjust your conversational style based on the personality of your child if you want to reach out to him or her effectively. Ranting and raving about something will result in having your pensive child clam up more. Instead, search for visual cues and tone of voice to figure out what is really going on. Being attune to your children’s feelings and personality quirks are an essential component of having a good conversation.

Ask and Don’t Attack 

Typically, when you are discussing an important issue, your children will be on the defensive mode the moment you attack. Screaming, shouting, and spanking have never resulted in anything good, especially for bigger kids. There comes a point where you have to sit them down and talk to them like a mature individual that they are.

Listen with not just open ears but an open heart. Usually, parents are very quick to judge. Before they know it, the damage has been done and the kids will just remain quiet as a sign of rebellion. If you want to keep communication lines open with your children, especially when you are tackling a critical topic, then learn to ask. Do not attack and be calm. Listen first and be fair in giving your judgment. Remember, they are little people with important feelings too.

Bottom Line

As you can see, there are many ways to improve communication with your children. The most important thing that you have to remember is that talking is a daily habit that must be fostered. You don’t talk to your kids just because you need to address something. You speak with them to show that you care. Sometimes, it is more than the big gestures. It is the little things, like simple daily conversations, that matter more.

About the Author

Henrietta Newman is a self-loving empty-nester into smudging, nature, yoga, fitness, healthy living, hunting, camping, hiking, tech, video games, gadgets, recipes, reviews and more.
With a love for the outdoors and visiting local attractions in and around NW PA and Lake Erie, you never know what you'll find in my nest! Subscribe to A Hen's Nest so you don't miss the fun!



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