I mean, yes, we’re with them all the time – so they have our presence, which is good, but if we’re not fully present in the moments that we’re with them, who are we hurting more – them or us?
Here are three great ways that you can shift your attention back on your children to really help strengthen your relationship together.
1. Hugs, Kisses, Attention
Not only do our children adore when we shower them with our attention, but they crave it in all regards as well.
Stop for a few minutes and simply hug your child, lay soft kisses on them, and tell them how much you love them.
Our children are never too old for our arms and our tender love.
These acts of such selfless emotion will always stay with your child throughout their life. They’ll look back on the tender moments when their parents held them in their arms and thoroughly enjoyed them through and through.
There is simply no replacement for a parents’ arms, love, and attention – none.
2. Really Listen To Your Children
If your child is consistent in whining about going to school or camp or whatever other activity they partake in, find out why.
You know yourself, if you really dread doing something, then you have a perfectly good and acceptable reason for wanting to avoid it.
If your child has been in a bad mood lately, if they’ve been constantly tired and lazy, take the time to find out why. Getting yourself to understand, acknowledge, and respect their reasoning is half the battle to fixing the problem.
It could be they are getting bullied, or it could be that their instructor is not listening to them and catering to their style of learning, or it may simply be that they are scared or uncomfortable in their surroundings while at the activity.
But you won’t ever really understand their reasons fully unless you dig deep and find out. Take the time to sit and talk with them, hear them out without judging, and reiterate to them that you’re here, you’re listening, you’re understanding them, and you will do what’s in your power to make their situation a better one.
That may mean that you pull them from an activity, or call a meeting with their teacher or coach, even just being present at their practices and life events is a huge pick-me-up in your children’s lives.
Also, understand that any transitions your child faces, be it entering preschool or moving to a new house, is all an open door for a frenzy of new emotions they have to face. Be proactive and make yourself their best support system for any upcoming transitions you foresee.
Your job as their parent is to let them know that their family unit is a strong and unified one that they can count on when things go grim.
3. Put Your Technology Down
Seriously – close your laptop, put down your iPhone, and turn off your eReader.
You’ll never be fully present in the moment with all of these distractions in your way.
When your child talks – listen, it’s really that simple. Don’t shoo them away so that you can check what’s happening on Facebook.
It wasn’t that long ago when we grew up without cell phones, computers, or iPads and we all survived just fine. It was ‘back in those times’ where we had to actually listen and communicate with each other to get anything done.
Don’t be afraid to go back to those times with your own kids.
Unplug and be in the moment, for it’s these moments when your children had all of you that they will appreciate the most as they get older.
About the author: Danielle is a freelance blogger, social media manager, and web content editor specializing in parenting, family, pregnancy, social media, and entrepreneurial topics. To learn more about Danielle, please visit her website at www.PenPointEditorial.com.