Getting Your Child to Listen to You
Is your child not listening to you? While you may feel like pulling your hair out, here's what you should do.
“Why can't you just listen to me?” How many times do you find yourself hollering this to your pint-sized adrenaline junky? While it's true that sometimes children don't listen because they are engaged with something more exciting, more often than not, they are just intentionally tuning you out.
One of the major reasons that children do not listen when their parents talk, is because they have learned to second guess what their parents are about to say. And most of the time, it's gonna be something that's not pleasing to their ears. They anticipate your nagging, and the fact that you are going to tell them to “do this” and “do that”. So how do you make your kids listen to you?
The first important thing to do is to try to establish better communication. While it might seem a little tough, make it a point to encourage simple conversations, like asking them how their day went. Attempt to create an open relationship so that they feel comfortable enough to confide and share their feelings more freely with you.
The Right Attitude
Another important step to build better rapport with your children is to learn how to handle your emotions better. Some parents lash out in the heat of the moment and hurl expletives that can never be taken back. Let your children know that you disapprove of their action, and not them. Try to keep clam and speak in a level tone. Dealing situations with the right attitude can dramatically change and define a better relationship with your children.
If you want to be heard, learn to communicate better. Speak as clearly as possible, and always talk with a caring voice. This will let them know you are always there to understand and empathise. Learn to also listen and become more in tuned with your kid’s feelings. Establishing effective communication as early as possible can significantly help nurture your relationship with your children.
Plan fun activities with your children. Like any type of relationship, everything is a constant work in progress. Do your part in reaching out to your children and learn the activities that they like to do. This will help you enjoy and closely monitor your kid’s growing up years. The sad fact is, when kids have grown not to like you, they will less likely to listen to you so make sure you recognise the warning signs and do something about it.
Trial and Error
Recognise the fact that every child has a unique way of listening. It’s your job to determine their preferred style. This may be a trial and error part, but it is important to learn how to be able to reach your child more effectively. Avoid nagging when they are in the middle of something, or when hungry or tired. In short, find a better time to talk when they are reasonably more relaxed and you can have their full attention.
Last but not the least, avoid lectures. Most kids learn to react to this negatively and simply tune you out. It’s important that you speak in a more calm and pleasant voice, the same tone you would use when talking to a friend.