In our fast-paced, high-stress world, our children are exposed to numerous stimuli that may affect their behaviour and listening abilities. Understanding the symptoms of underlying issues, such as bullying, is vital for fostering effective communication with our little ones.

In this digital age, filled with distractions, it is crucial to instil a love for reading in our children from a young age.

Why Listening is a Valuable Skill:

Listening carefully helps gather essential information. Effective listening builds strong and meaningful relationships. Attentive listening demonstrates respect and empathy towards others.

Connect Before You Direct:

Before giving your child directions or laying down rules, establish a genuine connection with them. Get down to their eye level, promoting eye-to-eye contact, which helps them feel heard and valued.

Your Role in Their Listening:

Remember, your child is your target market, and they are the listeners. Much like adults, children need to be emotionally settled before absorbing and processing information. Take the time to restore emotional equilibrium before resolving conflicts or providing instructions.

Practise What You Preach:

Avoid trying to stop a tantrum with one of your own. Instead, calmly inform your child that you will only engage with them once they stop their disruptive behaviour. Consistent refusal to engage will disarm them, as they seek a reaction from you. By refusing to react, you take control of the situation.

The One Word Rule:

Avoid lengthy explanations that tend to overwhelm children. Use one word to jog your child’s memory and link it to their tasks, such as “Plates!” This encourages immediate action without unnecessary back-and-forth.

Empower Your Child:

Rather than berating your child for doing something wrong, empower them by explaining the consequences or benefits of their actions. Guide them through decision-making, fostering a sense of responsibility.

For example: Situation: Your child consistently leaves the milk out. Old Reaction: “Put the milk away!” Solution: “My darling, the milk spoils when it isn’t in the fridge, and you won’t have milk for your breakfast then.”

The When And Then Rule:

Use the phrase “When you have…then you can…” to imply expected obedience. Avoid using “If,” as it opens the door to negotiation and arguments.

Heads Up…

Just like adults, children appreciate a “heads up” before abruptly changing activities. Avoid walking into a room and demanding immediate action without warning. State your expectations and offer a clear reward or consequence. Use the “When and Then Rule” for better compliance.

Shine Some Light On Their Feelings:

Rather than reacting to tantrums or outbursts with frustration or punishment, address their emotions. Pinpoint their feelings and guide them to channel emotions in a positive way.

Woah..One Thing At A Time:

Remember that a child’s attention span is short. Break down tasks into five steps: Stop, Focus, Listen, Think, and Action. Avoid overwhelming them with multiple instructions at once, ensuring they complete each task effectively.

Teaching your child to listen attentively is a valuable skill that sets the foundation for effective communication and emotional intelligence. By adopting these strategies, you can foster a positive and respectful relationship with your child while nurturing their ability to listen, process, and respond thoughtfully.

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