It seems like such a simple concept, but as we all get caught up in our busy lives, we often forget. We forget how spending just a little bit of time considering ourselves and our families, thinking about our family culture and it’s individual members, can help improve our relationships with each other. During every session or workshop I participate in, without failure, I mention reflection. I recommend that parents reflect about their children frequently. Who is that little boy or girl in the next room? How does your spouse or partner “see” him or her? Your caregiver? Extended family?
My philosophy has always been that there may be “best practices” for parenting and interacting with a child, based on their development, but it has to be individualized to be effective. The techniques that work for your friend and her children, may not work for you and yours. Bedtime at 7pm doesn’t work for the family where a parent comes home from work at 7. A parent raising their voice, may “mean business” to one child and terrify another. A soft voice explaining why something isn’t safe may be all it takes to help one child change their behavior, while another needs to “take a break” for a bit to try again. So take some time to consider your child…it will strengthen your connection!