We’ve all been in a place where we feel like we have repeated ourselves 1000 times. ¬†There is nothing like raising children to make us aware of the way in which we ¬†communicate. ¬†Below are some of my compassionate thoughts for all those moments that you are rested, patient, well hydrated, relaxed, conscious… and for the moments you are not those things, hang in there. ¬†We are human. ¬†We do our best. ¬†We love and learn.
Gather Before you Blather: ¬†Yelling directions from the sofa is so lovely, as you are comfortable and relaxed, but sadly results will vary. ¬†You might find your communication more successful if you actually go to the person ¬†you want to speak with. ¬†Imagine if someone called out directions to you from another room or from far away. ¬†It never feels good.
Tweak Before You Speak: ¬†Observe what your child is doing before you attempt to convey information. ¬†If they are in the middle of anything and you want to have them come to the dinner table find a way to communicate that while respecting the fact that you are interrupting them. ¬†Ex. I see you’re in the middle of something, however, its time to come to the table.
Short, Sweet, Simple: ¬†The three “S’s” of communication. ¬†You talk a lot as a parent. ¬†Keep it short, sweet and simple.
Can you Hear what I Hear: Children have a lot to say and share with us. ¬†If we want to them to truly listen to us, we need to listen to them. ¬†So what does real listening look like? ¬†It means hearing and internalizing what a person is sharing with you. ¬†If you are preparing a response in your head while someone is speaking to you, you are probably not listening. ¬†Try taking a long pause before you respond or asking them a question based on what they have shared so that you can learn more. ¬†Show them how great it feels to be heard.
Here’s to only asking 999 times.