Communication is key in any relationship. Kids these days are way smarter than we were while growing up. Five-year-olds know how to download apps from a play store. Seven-year-olds are putting up awesome YouTube videos. A little older kids know how to get themselves from one place to another using Uber and Ola Cabs. They claim that they won’t ever buy cars. Let’s not even get started on how smart teenagers are these days. They all are uber smart. Period.
And they all are glued to their mobile, laptop, TV screens as well. Communication in the real sense is diminishing these days. In that, in order to be connected to your kids, you need to have a fabulous bond with each other. If not, you are never going to know what goes on in their fancy minds.
Here are some tips to build great parent-child communication:
1. Have some no gadget time at home: The best way to begin communicating is to wean off from the gadgets for some time in the day.
2. Encourage dinner table talks: The best time to unwind and discuss how your day was.
3. Listen intently when they tell you something: Do not cut them off. Do not give opinions unless asked. Listen will all your heart when they talk.
4. Be patient, with your teens: Your kids are sometimes used to not speaking to you too much. Give them time. They will come around.
5. Be lovingly persistent: Be persistent about your desire to communicate with them. Lovingly persistent.
6. Do not accuse them of not giving you enough time: This never works with anyone really.
7. Be non-judgemental: Do not judge them whatsoever. Give them space to speak to you freely.
8. Share your stories with them: That opens the gates for a two-way communication.
9. Be honest when you share: When you speak openly, they take the cue to do the same.
10. Be kind, but not interfering: Practice listening just to listen and not to give advice until asked.
11. Be their friend: This is self explanatory. Do what your friends do for you. Be there for them, no matter what.
12. Find out about their interests: This is how you start being their friends.
13. Find out about their heartaches: This takes time. What hurts them. What ticks them off. Things that their friends know more than you parents.
14. Confide in them: Yes, you read that right. Treat them like a friend and trust them with your secrets.
15. Trust them: Yes, you need to trust them, a lot.
16. Be open: Talk about everything under the sun. Forget the taboo. Your are their first friend, you parent person.
17. Let them have their own opinions: Even if those opinions are different from yours. It’s okay. As long as you all respect each other.
18. Keep the door open: Be up for conversations whenever they feel like, and not just when you feel like it.
19. Don’t ask questions that make them uncomfortable: Not all the time atleast.
20. Cherish and enjoy this blossoming friendship with your kids!