by Susan A. Haid

One of the best things we can do as parents is simply listen, with an open mind and an open heart, to our children. We represent the safe space, so to speak, where our kids can say exactly what they’re thinking and feeling without judgment. This is a very, very important role we play and not to be underestimated in it’s influence on our child’s development. As parents, we often feel the need to guide or control our children, and although this role has its place, sometimes the very best thing we can do is listen, just listen. When we become the sounding board for our kids, we give them the opportunity to figure things out for themselves and feel supported in their experiences. Expect that what your kids will say will be contradictory, full of emotion, or drama, or self-centeredness. This is O.K. Kids need to vent just like adults do. We don’t need to make every conversation a life lesson. When we simply listen with presence, we have created a place where kids are free to express themselves openly then let those energies lie until the answers emerge on their own. When children know they have your presence and support in this way, they are free to think and feel without fear, without control, without guilt or shame. The answers they will come up with, then, will be clear, empowered and honoring of the self. Of course, there will be times when lengthly, guiding conversations are necessary. But most of the time, our job as a parent is very simple: listen. This takes a lot of pressure off of the job of parenting. Try it and and see. It seems to work miracles, but the real miracle is the natural wisdom that exists within your child.

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Author's Bio: 

Susan A. Haid, BSN, RN, MA is the Author/Producer of the multimedia package entitled Lily's Truth. She is also the author of two books entitled Lily's Truth and Bloom respectively. Susan is a teacher of New Energy tools that make the journey through life gentler and easier. Her work is designed to support parents in raising empowered, happy, healthy children.