Listening Skills for Parents

Here is a helpful podcast and article from the website Growing Nimble Families for anyone who lives or works with kids!

Getting our children to listen to us is a frustration most of us face daily. Getting our spouse, siblings, work colleagues to listen to us too. Listening skills is one of those things that some people have and many of us can learn to do better.

Last time we talked about the listening ups and downs. Today we’re looking at some solutions for us as parents to try starting from how we start conversations to what we can do to help the children be better listeners.

We need to have listening skills and habits.

This is by no means the list to end all lists. I’m eager to hear what you do in your home. It’s always good to have a range of ideas to try so jump in with your ideas too.

Golden rules for us – Listening dos

These aren’t in any particular order or rank. We regularly mix it up and combine different ones depending on the situation.

Think age/stage. Before the interaction ( or as you open your mouth!) What do I need to do so my X age/stage child can hear me?
Touch them.
Get down to their level.
Pause from what we’re doing
Look them in the eye.
Use their name.

Family listening skills has been a recurring topic at our family roundtables recently. This is the perfect time, away from the incident to actually share how we do it.

We use some silly puppets to share what happened and the boys chime in with ideas about what could be different. We’ve have mini sketches where hubby and I act it out.

The best thing we’ve done, in my opinion, is print out a whole body listening chart, like this one and refer to it. If we’re sharing something we ask for whole body listening and you seem them move into a better listening position.

More of the article can be found here.