I’ve talked with moms about how to win the heart of their children. At a time when we can check email, Facebook, twitter and text on our phones, it’s easy to forget the easiest and perhaps simplest way of showing our children they matter.
Listen to them.
I am guilty of sometimes tuning out the din around me to work (especially because I work primarily online now). I have been guilty of having one of the boys come up to me and say “hey mom guess what?!” and they barely get an acknowledgment from me. In fact, there have been times when they’ve been talking to me and the web sucks me back in…eventually they quit talking and walk away. What kind of message does that send to my children? If we aren’t willing to listen to the “little” things they’re telling us, they won’t want to tell us the “big” things.
In the last couple of months I have been feeling convicted about how little I listened, really listened, to my children when they were talking. I have purposed to put away my phone when they’re talking, to not check Facebook while my husband is trying to say something and to be willing to look up from my computer when they say “Guess what!” I have also changed my daily routine so that I have time to work during naptime or after they go to bed so that I’m not distracted.
Our children have much to say. We are building a foundation with them now while they are young. If we show them that they are important, that we want to hear what they have to say they will want to talk more to us. They’ll start to share not only their discoveries on the sidewalk, but also the desires of their hearts. And as they get older, they’ll feel safe sharing their struggles, their fears and what hides deep down.
If you want to win the heart of your child the first step is to listen to them. Show them they matter.