3 Simple Steps to Deeper, More Satisfying Parenting
Parenting is hard, but connecting with your kids doesn’t haven’t to be. Every parent wants to connect with their child, and every child needs guidance. If you are like most parents, you have experienced the frustration of missed attempts to connect. Whether you are parenting a child at 5 or 25 the following is a simple tool for connecting to your child in a way that will help your children be receptive to the guidance you long to offer them. Remember, your child, like everyone, longs to be heard and understood. Parenting to foster connection with your child can be as easy as remembering to B.E.G. BOND. EXPLORE. GUIDE.
Bonding with your child begins with remembering what it was like to be them. Share a story of when you faced a similar situation at their age and the emotions you felt at the time.
Ask your child open-ended questions about their situation. “What do you think you should do?” or “What other options do you have?” Encouraging your child to think for themselves is critical for developing independence. Affirming their thoughts will let them know you believe in them and build their confidence. Used effectively, your child will be more open to your guidance when they feel understood and valued.
Offering guidance is a vital part of parenting. How we offer guidance is also important. Guidance can be given through direct advice, sharing a personal story, or leading by example. Our kids learn more by watching us, than listening to us. According to Dr. Irvin Yalom, Psychiatrist, direct advice giving rarely produces lasting changes. However, at times direct advice giving can be useful. If you are parenting a teenager an effective way to guide is to ask if they are open to your thoughts. This simple gesture will allow them to be more open to what you have to say.
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