Communicating effectively is mega important if you want to live a happy and harmonious life.
If you can do it yourselves at home with your wife, husband, sister, brother, dog/cat (yep them too), mother-in-law (argh!) and pass the skill onto your kids at home, it’s also a transferrable skill that will be invaluable in every area of everyone’s lives.
To keep communications alive in your home:
- Make the effort to have regular meals at the dining table together. Even if it’s just breakfast and/or supper. Everyone can talk about their day and it will help them develop speaking and listening life skills. It’s an ideal opportunity to swop “my day” stories with your partner and keep lines of communication open to your children too.
- Have regular “Family Meetings” to provide an environment where everyone can talk openly about what’s on their mind and get involved in decision-making. We’ve been doing this in our family since the children could talk. Now they accept this as a way to express what they’d like, and at 6 and 7 they now even call their own meetings if they feel they’re not being heard.
- Use every situation to provide examples of communicating to your kids. “Oh look, your sister’s looking a little sad today. How could we find out what’s bothering her?”
- Consciously talk to each other. How often have you just grunted a hello, goodbye, affirmative or negative to each other. Make the effort to fully engage in conversations. Don’t be ships that pass in the night. As a couple, have you every got to the end of a weekend and realised you just haven’t REALLY SPOKEN to your spouse? Sure, you’ve talked but you never once really connected. Communication is about consciously being aware.
TALK and LISTEN and LISTEN and LISTEN then TALK.