It goes without saying that parents love their children above everything else. But for many, it can get rather tiresome and frustrating when children refuse to listen.
It’s important to remember that communication is a two-way process and learning to listen will help you to better understand your child’s wishes and concerns and in turn, will also improve communicating your own.
1. Talk to each other
One important question to ask yourself is: Do you talk and listen to your children in a conscious manner or do you just tell them what they should be doing all day? Children quickly become frustrated when their parents to not take the time to listen to them. Every child is unique and different, some children need more motivating than others, e.g. to do their homework. Nevertheless, communicating in everyday life should not be forgotten, and it also extends beyond topics such as school. Your child will appreciate any time you give to them, and if you show a genuine interest in their thoughts and ideas from time to time, it’ll mean the world to them.
2. Don’t raise your voice
It’s certainly frustrating when the kids refuse to listen to you. But this is no reason to raise your voice and start shouting. This will only intimidate them, and doesn’t communicate sentiments of wanting the best for them. Quite the opposite, it will most likely push them away from you. First, make sure your children have heard and understood you, and then calmly but confidently explain what is expected of them.
3. Use simple language
A simple reason why young children do not obey, is because they have not understood what you have said. Consequently, they don’t respond to it and choose not to do anything out of fear of doing something wrong. It is crucial that you get down to their level, make eye contact with them and explain the situation in simple and calm words. The best way to make sure, is to ask the child if they have understood everything.
4. Don’t ignore
Some grown-ups have a habit of reprimanding or ignoring their children when they are trying to jump into a conversation. It can certainly be annoying when you are trying to talk to another person and your child is constantly interrupting to try and get your attention. Instead of ignoring the child, just ask them to wait patiently until you have finished what you are saying. It is always something good if a child asks questions and wants to participate in a discussion, after all they also just want to be listened to like an adult. Give them them chance to add their piece once you have finished conversing, it will not only make them feel appreciated but it might also add something of value to your own conversation.
5. Take the problem seriously
Children are sensitive little beings and while their thoughts and impressions about certain things are sometimes of little relevance to adults, they should always be heard out. Children often feel like their problems are pushed aside and their opinions are not taken seriously. Parents have to appreciate this and give children the advice and support they are seeking. Patronizing on the other hand, is never well received and not helpful to anyone.
Just like adults, children don’t take kindly to incessant criticism and having their faults and mistakes pointed out. It is much better to offer assistance to rectify a problem and provide positive feedback when they overcome their obstacles by themselves. So, «disobedience » can occur as a result of misunderstandings that have to be better explained by the parents. Better communication begins with you, and an understanding of your child. So start talking and listening to each other, it’s as easy as that.