Today I want to talk to you about something that as a mother or father you might have asked yourself at some point… or perhaps not… “Do I know how to really listen to my child?”
Photo by Growing Wildy
How many of us get home and then we’re busy with our mobiles, cooking, watching TV or reading the newspaper while we’re “listening” to our children? Does that sound familiar? Yes, all of us do it. And there’s no need to feel guilty or beat yourself up about it. Just be aware of it, notice it. Because to really listen to someone the first thing you need to do is to be present. To be 100% focussed on what you’re doing, in this case listening. At our workshops there are plenty of mothers and father who say “my child doesn’t tell me anything, he doesn’t talk about things he’s worried about”. And we’re not surprised. Because a lot of the time this problem occurs simply because we don’t listen as well as we should. Would you tell your concerns to someone who you don’t feel is really listening to you? And what do we mean by listening well? When you listen with attention, with your full presence, you really hear what your child is telling you….and what he’s not telling you. You pick up on his body language. You pick up on his emotions. The emotions that lie beneath his words. And if you’re interested and you listen well, you’ll pick up on his values, on what’s important for him or her. His essence.
Photo by Growing Wildy
Wildy Think about someone special for a moment. Someone who believed or believes in you. Someone who knew how to reach your essence. Someone who made you grow, who really supported you. And now think about how that person listened to you. Think about that feeling of profound understanding, of presence. Remember what a great feeling it was or is? This is the gift I want you to give your child. Profound listening, with presence. And to do this you just need to be aware and to say to yourself when you’re with your child “now I’m going to stop what I’m doing and I’m going to concentrate on listening to him, with all that I am”. And you don’t need to do it all the time. We can’t concentrate on something permanently. Just be aware and do it when it’s important. 10 minutes each day is enough. It’s not about the quantity, it’s the quality that matters.
Try it. Listen. It’s a gift. For your child and for you.
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