Let’s go back to those childhood years when life was much easier but we thought that everything was the end of the world. Reflect on the time parents were the worst and didn’t understand your life at all. We all had to do what we were told without question and nothing was negotiable. Fast-forward to right now where you are now and you see your parents and your behavior strangely mimics theirs. After vowing not to act anywhere close to the way they did, you have grown up and now have a true understanding of the undertaking that is parenting.
In order for any relationship to work, you have to want to understand the other party. Being a parent is no different. Shutting down your child will also shut down your relationship with them. Remember how it felt when you thought you weren’t being heard? Parents know what’s best and although frustration can overtake you, you have to be intentional about your communication with your child. Here a few pointers:
The business of family: When you leave work and go home, it’s best to leave work at the work. But it’s also useful to run your families, in some ways, like a business. Managers would understand this. Just as you schedule time for anything else, take time to specifically concentrate on your child. If you would allow your employees to come and talk to you at any time, how can you not allow your child to do the same? Dinnertime is always a good time to catch up on their day but don’t let this be the only time you talk with them. Ask questions. Even if it seems like you are being a bother, that’s better than a parent who can’t be bothered. Purposely showing interest in their day-to-day shows the love that you have. And with love comes trust.
The trust factor: Let your child know that when and what they want to talk about is important. Nothing is silly and they can come to you with anything. Just like in any other relationship, trust is something you have to gain. Once they trust you, they’ll be open with you.
Hear ye, hear ye! Being that trustful, listening ear means that you are now open to receive anything that will come your way. There may come a time when your child will come to you with something serious. While it may not be what you want to hear, you want this to happen. Your reaction to what they say will either make or break your relationship. This is the time to parent with your ears. An open ear means a closed mouth, and although you might want to inject your opinion, if your mouth is closed, theirs is open.
Having a full time job and being a full time parent is a big deal. Yes, it’s imperative to separate the two, but these tactics used in the workplace can greatly benefit you at home. Schedule time, open your door and watch your child open their heart.
Written by: Joyanne Lawrence, Staff Writer, Modern Domestic