Ways to get Kids to Listen….

Children who have been diagnosed with ADHD and other types of mental health issues cause parents to really turn on their patience button. These kids need special attention time and care. Some of the ways parents can help listen to their children and help children listen to you are listed below.
1. Listen to your kids….
Parents know their children better than anyone else therefore listen to them. Their verbal and non-verbal language tells you what is going on with them.
Do not force your children into situation just because you feel they “should” be doing certain things. Therefore if they are uncomfortable in groups do not force them into group activities. Forcing children sometimes into what you the parents “expects” does more harm to the child.
Look at the signs and help them to navigate around situations and circumstances that are uncomfortable.
2. Be a Reliable Parent…
Do what you say. Often times parents make threats or promises that they do not follow through on or keep. This creates instability and cause the child not to trust what you say. Therefore when you say “I am going to the shop to come back, I will be a few minutes” Do not go out for four hours.
3. Be Honest with your child….
Asking your children to tell little white lies like “If Sarah calls tell her I am not home” or ” Do not tell your dad I bought these shoes today” causes problems because you are essentially teaching your children to lie by building up on little white lies.
4. Be Accurate
Sometimes parents can be motivated fear. Parents are afraid that their children will get hurt and sometimes we tell them all sorts of things, presenting them as facts in order to get your children to comply. E.g. “You will fall if you go any higher on the swing”, “If you eat too many sweets your teeth will fall out”.
When children find our these ‘facts’ are untrue and a way to control, parents will be less sought for advice. That though, can be very dangerous when they then turn to peers for advice in their teenage years. Be wary of the difference between giving advice and facts. Parents should give their opinion and discuss their children’s point of view then come to a consensus.
5. Be Playful with your kid…..
Playing with your kids can greatly improved communication. Sometimes as parents we get so caught up in the adult world that we forget that in order to connect and communicate with our kids we ourselves have to come down to their world. Playing side by side activities and allowing them to direct play encourages them. You can listen and learn what is going on with your child through their play and playing with them.
6. Be Positive instead of negative…..so less “No’s”
Sometimes we need to find how to rephrase our speech so that it comes out positive instead of negative or a downright “no”. This can assist in how your day children respond to you and also shows them that you are listening and trying to help them.
For example, if your child wants a toy and you can’t afford it, rather than say an outright no you could say, ‘Sure, let’s put it on the wish list and work out ways we can buy it’. Do you have anything you can sell or trade? What about a second-hand one? Let’s work out ways we can save up for it’.
Showing them you are always on their side, trying to find ways to help them, will strengthen their trust in you and set you up as partners rather than adversaries.
7. ‘No’ is an acceptable answer in some situations….
When we approach things in generally a positive way the times we do have to say a downright “NO” will cause children to respond and listen. Our “NO” has to be firm and assertive and not a tool we use all the time since it becomes less effective when overused.
Also as parents we should be able to accept “NO” from our children from time to time. We cannot tell them no and not also respect that they are entitled to tell us no in some situations.
8. Be informative.
The above guidelines are to assist in providing information, advice and to encourage feedback from your children rather than demands or orders. The guidelines will help you to help them in listening to you. However, they might not always comply with your request, just as you do with them, they may say no but suggest acceptable alternatives to you both.
These techniques seeks to help to produce a reasoning, thoughtful, free-thinking child that has a strong connection with his/her parents.

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