I'm the first to admit that I've use these words with my kids. Don't let me fool you whenever I make recommendations and suggestions of things that would be more helpful for our children, that I haven't slipped up and made a ton of mistakes in regards to the very thing I'm telling you about.
As I'm navigating on how to write my blog posts, I know that I'm going to try to offer support in the same way that I like to learn it. That is tiny, sweet, easy, doable baby steps. So my first baby step that I often talk about is because I constantly need those reminders myself! We need to stop telling our kids to "stop" and "focus" and "listen" and "look at me". But it's not that we don't want them to do those things, it's just how are we demanding them when half the time we probably aren't doing them ourselves?
So here's your tiny little take-home message, start tuning in and paying attention to when you aren't focusing, when you aren't listening, and when you aren't following directions. See if you can shift what you're doing in order to shape what they will do in the future.
I've been trying to use the phrase "here is my message". I'm trying to let everybody be active communicators in our conversation and by doing that it's not about me demanding how they communicate with me, it's about me modeling good communication skills as well as giving them the guidelines of what my message is. So model good listening , model repeating what your kids say when they speak so they know they are heard, and pay attention to the message. Be a part of the experience together. Create positive messages together. Let's put our phone down and close our laptops. Let's walk away from the television and lean and to the messages all around us.