• • • • •
December 1, 2014
Practical Ways to Connect with Your Child’s Heart
Here are eleven suggestions to help you find ways to connect with your child’s heart.
1. Talking. Children often like to hear stories from your own childhood. Don’t feel like you have to tie a lesson into the story. Just tell it to them as if you were relating the details to a friend.
2. Listen to your kids. Take an interest in their activities and their day. Once they start talking, draw them out with more questions.
3. Touching. A hug or a gentle hand on a shoulder communicates warmth and love.
4. High-energy activities. Kids love excitement. Look for exciting activities to enjoy together.
5. Share in your child’s interests. Look for ways to get involved and learn about things your kids enjoy.
6. Special treats. Simple surprises say “You’re special.”
7. Work together. Find a task and work at it together as teammates.
8. Affirm. Offer genuine praise for a job well done.
9. Have fun with your kids. Be silly, tell jokes, or wrestle.
10. New times in a child’s life set the stage to connect emotionally. Be there and available to share the moment.
11. Traumatic events provide opportunities to develop closeness. Remember that the most important thing isn’t fixing the problem, it’s restoring the heart.
In short, enjoy your kids and have fun with them. Celebrate what makes them unique and special. Take an interest in their lives. If you don’t feel like it, do it anyway. Your kids need your attention, playfulness, love, affection, and joy. When you give to your kids, you contribute to their well-being and your family’s strength. Yes, it’s sacrifice, but the time you put in now will go a long way toward reducing friction when it’s time to confront or discipline.
To learn more about connecting with your child’s heart, consider the book, Parenting is Heart Work by Dr. Scott Turansky and Joanne Miller, RN, BSN.