I just had a great first session with a new client. This mom’s biggest frustration right now is that her two children (11 and 9) “do not listen.” Once she shared that her daughter has an auditory processing disorder, and realized that most of her instructions are in spoken word only, she had an ah-ha moment. Love it! It never dawned on her that her daughter was simply not processing the information the way it was being delivered. Now she is going to be using eye contact on a regular basis, ensuring that the communication is getting through, and that they are connecting. Yay!
With her son, he has ADHD, and is unable to handle more than one task at a time. The task she gave him was “clearing his plate from the table.” In reality, because she wanted him to clear off the food and put it in the dishwasher, she was asking him to do four tasks: (1) pick up the plate, (2) go to the sink, (3) clear off the food, and (4) put it in the dishwasher. He never got to the dishwasher, and was always in trouble for that. She is now going to work with him on truly making it one thing at a time. She can build from there.
There are so many reasons your kids may not be listening. Assume the best. Assume they would “if they could.” Is the message getting through? Are they understanding what you want? Do they hear you? Are they able to do the task at hand? Those are some great questions to start with. Come from a place of curiosity, of wanting to understand. It makes a huge difference.
Enjoy your day!
[Traci Carman is the Founder and CEO of A Loving Way ~ How I Parent Makes a Difference. Join our free monthly Q&A calls. To get more information and to register, visit us at www.alovingway.com/monthlycall.]
, auditory processing disorder
, conscious parenting
, not listening
I’ve been really working on balance this summer, so we get things done that need to be done, AND we have a real sense of down time, flow and freedom this summer. We are enjoying sleeping in every single day (one of our favorites!) and a slower pace overall.
This morning, I said to my 11-year-old daughter, “Could you pick up the pillows and put the couches back together for me, please?” (She had a friend sleep over last night and they camped in the living room.) Instantly (yes, instantly) she walked over and started picking up pillows and putting everything back together. Now, you might think, “Of course. That’s what you asked her to do.” However, it doesn’t always happen so fast. I was jazzed! What did I do? I thanked her and appreciated her for doing that, and for doing it the first time I asked. (Positive reinforcement.)
Then, I asked my son (14) if he would please pick up the Blokus game off the floor. We had played it the night before. He too was right on it. No questions. No pause. Just action. Yahoo! I love it!
When I asked them what caused them to move so quickly, they looked at me like I was an alien. Of course, this is how they behave always. Ha!
Well, I’m going to credit it to less stress, more rest, and flow time happiness.
The moral of this story?
1) Simple things make a difference. Thank them EVERY TIME they do something you like. (This is part of our Moms Making a Difference program.)
2) Make sure you and your kids have plenty of down time and rest time. Take advantage of lazy summer days.
3) Plan activities too, so there is balance.
Parenting can be a joyful experience. When you hit speed bumps, slow down and pay attention. The information you learn in those speed bumps will come back to serve you later. It has many times for me.
[Traci Carman is the Founder and CEO of A Loving Way ~ How I Parent Makes a Difference.]
, down time
If your kids are already out of school, like ours, you are making some quick adjustments to your schedule right about now.
It’s interesting because every year our children are older, our lives are different with regard to working or not working, being home with the kids, or having a new baby, etc.
For us, it’s really important that we create balance. I can get lost in my work, and we can also get lost in play. How do we accomplish both? This is the simple format we’re using this summer:
1) We came up with mom’s ”work” days.
2) We picked one day that is our “gallavant” day, and we are coming up with ideas of fun things to do on that day.
3) The other days are “flow” days. I will fit some work in, and we will fit some play in. We may create play dates with friends, or just hang out watching movies.
It’s nice to create some amount of structure AND some amount of free time and free expression.
See what works for your family. Have FUN!
[Traci Carman is the Founder and CEO of A Loving Way ~ How I Parent Makes a Difference. Join our free monthly Q&A calls: www.alovingway.com/monthlycall.]
, conscious parenting
Today my 11-year-old daughter said, “We make a good team.” We actually do. We work well together. We talk. We bond. Best of all is the openness and honesty of our conversations. Obviously they are age appropriate. What I like about them, and she even commented, is that we can say whatever is true for us, and have real girl talk. I feel like the fruits of my labor are paying off. We have been conversing about life for 11+ years now, and rather than moving away from me as she heads into the tween/teen journey, she’s leaning in to me. Yes! Even my 14-year-old son … I’m noticing a depth of connection really taking place. He’s spreading his wings, being who he is, and yet coming in for connection, feedback and love. My secret? Authentic connection. I feel them, and they feel me. Period.
[Traci Carman is the Founder of A Loving Way ~ How I Parent Makes a Difference. Join our free monthly Q&A calls by registering at www.alovingway.com/monthlycall.]
, moving away
My oldest son is 22 years old and going through some challenges in his life. As a mom, I sure wish he was little and I could just grab him under my wing and make it all good again. However, as our kids grow up, it becomes their responsibility to make choices and live their life, while going through lessons, challenges and triumphs.
What I shared with my son is that I am his mom, I will stand by his side, and I love him. I shared that we all make choices, some not the best, and we do our best to move forward, hopefully making better choices as we go.
What I also shared is that as I was learning and growing in my life, I was making my share of mistakes along the way. We all do. Because I was a mom at the time, I know some of those mistakes have impacted him, and that I am really sorry for that.
All parents will come to a point in life where we realize we have done some pretty amazing things for our kids … and we have done some pretty hurtful things too. My kids know that while I don’t have all the answers, my heart is 200% for them every time a decision is made. And, I’ve gotten support along the way, whether it’s been a listening ear, a coach, mentor, books, classes, etc. If you need some help on your parenting journey, be sure to get it. It’s too important of a job to give it to chance. It really does take a village to raise a child. Who is in your village?
[Traci Carman is the Founder of A Loving Way ~ How I Parent Makes a Difference. For information about coaching and other services and programs: 800-647-1171, tracicarman@alovingway.]
Tags: adult children
, conscious parenting
, i love you