5 tips for great communication
By Keshyla Reddick
We’ve all heard the expression “communication is key.” While that’s very true, communicating with children is a tricky area for many parents. Talking to your kids can be like pulling teeth: a long process in which they aren’t too keen on participating.
Here are five tips that will make communicating with your child a little easier.
1. Avoid long talks
As adults we are used to long talks; kids, on the other hand, are not. Try to get to the point of the conversation near the beginning, while you have your child’s full attention.
2. Talk with distractions
Try using activities such as baking together, grocery shopping or driving (anything but television) as an opportunity to talk to your children about how they are doing. You might think you know, but it’s good to hear it from them.
3. Be respectful
If your children want to share a thing or two that they deem important, listen to them. Don’t belittle their problems, even if they seem small or easily fixed. Take them seriously and offer helpful solutions or scenarios.
4. Use the right tone
How you respond to what your youngsters tell you now will impact how much they will tell you in the future. If you sound annoyed or generally uninterested, they might stop or change their mind about what it was they were going to say.
Children aren’t always looking for advice. Sometimes they just want to tell you things. Being able to listen is an important factor in good communication.
Don’t forget to encourage openness
Kids are more likely to be open when they are in a relaxing environment. At times, they can find it easier to tell you important news if your focus isn’t completely on them.