When it comes to our children, the simpler and more direct our messages, the better our chances are of being heard. When we speak in a lengthy format, trying to get our message across in a complicated manner, children see it as a lecture and start to tune us out rather quickly. When you address what you need to address in a very clear way, you may have more chance of being heard.
For example, letting your kids know that it would be helpful and important for them to make their beds in the morning: If you make this a long drawn out discussion including all that you do as a parent and that you don’t have time, you have lost your child’s attention. If you let them know that, because they are growing up and maturing, you would really like them to make their own beds in the morning.
As a parent, I can remember times when my children were younger trying to get them to understand me through a lengthy discussion. When I think back to my wordiness, I wonder how often I was heard. When we think our kids don’t hear us or aren’t listening, perhaps this is a message for us to tap into how we are communicating, what we are saying, and whether it can be fine-tuned or simplified. The last question to ask ourselves is would we listen to what we are saying?
We are often quick to say that they don’t listen. But rather, if we look within ourselves to see how we can change or influence that, we may have better outcomes, rather than trying to change their behavior.
I have found that when I fine-tune my statements to the keywords that are needed, I am a much more successful communicator. Keeping it clean, clear and simple is a formula you can use for communication within your family. What technique do you currently use?