Do you wish you could improve the kind of relationship you have with your kids, but you don’t know how to start? Keep in mind that it’s not enough to tell your kids you love them. The most important thing is to prove your love through your actions, and make them feel how much you care for them every single day. By applying these practical tips, you can create a stronger and closer connection with your children.
1. Motivate and encourage them.
Kids form their perception of themselves based on what others say about them. With this in mind, you need to encourage them and make them realize that they are inherently good people who are worthy of respect and love. In everything you say and do, let your kids know that you’re always on their side. After all, it’s impossible for your children to consider you as their friend if all you tell them are criticisms or harsh words. When you make them feel like the worst person in the world, you will lose your leverage with them.
2. Teach them the value of respect.
Respect should be mutual, even with your kids. As you set limits and policies, you should do it with empathy and consideration of your child’s feelings, as well. For instance, if you tell your child to talk to you in a respectful manner, then you should do the same thing to him or her. When children are treated with respect, they will also learn to be considerate of others’ feelings, as well. After all, it is not enough that you set rules for your kids to follow; you also need to serve as a role model who abides by these policies you have created. By respecting your children and treating them with dignity, you will also earn their respect.
You don’t need to do something special or go on an expensive trip with your kids just to create an excellent relationship with them. In fact, every interaction you have with them helps build a relationship, so you need to be constantly aware of how you treat or relate with your kids. Carpooling, grocery shopping, or any other regular activities matter to kids as much as that heart-to-heart talk you have with them when they have a problem. Hence, you should contemplate about any recurring interactions with them when you handled a situation negatively. Constant nagging and criticizing only cause relationships to fall apart, and you have better things to do than to spend each day in a state of frustration.
4. Communicate with your kids regularly.
Do you pay attention to your kids when they prattle on and on about their friends and other preoccupations, even when you have a busy schedule or other important things to do? If so, then your children are likely to confide in you about other serious matters when they reach their teen years. Although it may be difficult to listen to them intently when you need to do your chores or attend to your other concerns, two things happen when you keep the habit of ignoring them. First, you miss that golden opportunity to learn more about your kids, and they develop a notion that you never really listen so they will lose interest in talking to you.
What do you do when your teenager slams the door out of rage, or your three year-old tells you she hates you? While you may be tempted to shout back at them, or blurt out nasty words to your enraged child, the most sensible thing to do is to avoid taking these things personally. Keep in mind that their actions and words are not exactly about you – it’s basically about them and their personal issues. Your angry kids may be unable to control themselves and they are still immature to express or make sense out of their emotions. When you choose to take their words personally, you will only feel hurt and decide to lash out, which can only make this tough situation worse than it already is.
When confronted with your kid’s negative words and actions, you should take deep breaths, let go of the hurt, lower your voice, and leave the room to give yourself and your child some space. In addition, try to recall how it feels like to be a child who is extremely upset and unable to restrain his or her emotions. The idea is to act out of love and understanding instead of anger.
The most essential component of developing a strong relationship with your kids is your state of mind. Although you may have a demanding job and a million other responsibilities to handle, make it a point to prioritize your children when they signal a need to talk. When they feel that other things matter more to you, then they are likely to look elsewhere for acceptance and attention. Unfortunately, that will be your loss, as much as theirs.
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