Four Years Ago I was invited to speak to A Small Group Of Parents and Children at an Event taking place by different Life Coaches.
I chose it to be about Building The Bridge of Communication Between Parents and Their Children/Teenagers or Even Teacher/Children Relationships.
It was my first speech so I molded it how I wanted it!
I put together a small power point presentation and plucked up the courage to present it in My Way!
THE WAY THAT WORKED FOR ME!
My way! Which was from the heart and from my own personal experiences which I had lived and experienced difficult moments in my own home with my two children my daughter 6 years old and my son 9 years old.
I knew I had to bring about change!
By first realising I had to change things about me, it was my behaviour towards certain situations which was causing conflict in my home and conflict behaviour from my children.
I decided to observe my self more and what I was doing and saying rather than the full focus on the children and always having the need to correct them and their behaviour. Which by my observations over the years I found this is what most if not all parents do.
So I looked to correct my behaviour and I was honest enough to let them know about my wrong behaviour and how I was going to make many amends and adjustments in order for us to be happier.
I started my self observation when my daughter was 6 years old and my son was 9 years old, and so by the time of the speech I had a good 5 years of total transformation in my home from all angles! My behaviour and my children’s behaviour.
What I found with my observation was tragic, I found I was on the phone a lot with friends mostly talking about negative issues and constantly ushing my kids away to their rooms. As time went by I fast forwarded and took my self forward to the time that my son would be 16 years old when he would be opening the door and rushing out of the house without caring to give me any indication to what he is up to and where he is going. My fast forward vision showed me calling out to my son “where are you going”? and him responding rudely “what do you care and why should I answer to you”? “You kept ushering me away when I most needed you at my delicate age of 9 and now that I am 16 I don’t need you to be bothered about me. I needed you then, now I don’t care if you care”. and you know what he would have been right to have that attitude with me.
WOW! What a fast forward vision.
That surly got me around to making drastic changes with myself a.s.a.p.
I got a sudden urge to make changes.
I found involving them, having sit down talks at certain times in the day and planning our day ahead always made it easier when bed time arose.
I found drawing a pie chart of the hours in the day and helping them see how many hours they have ahead of them in order to eat, do their homework, rest and play and of course have quality time with me just before they went to bed worked wonders! In fact I did not have to ever mention bed time! They would be ready prepared and happy as pie to put themselves to bed by 21.30.
This was because I helped them understand if I gave them quality time together before 21.30 then mummy also deserves time out to be able to have her own quality time and peace before she went to bed. They both understood me and complied with me which was truly a touching experience.
We had gained mutual respect and Understanding by regular communication and interaction. I would ask for their opinion and let them make decisions and in time we over came our own huge challenges and were on a very good road to having a wonderful harmonious environment at home, which was the goal I had set ahead for us.
A few tips:
1. Always cooking together in the kitchen after school. (Making it fun and letting them choose from different food types, ones that they would enjoy eating after helping them understand the importance of eating all types of nutritional foods for our health. ie and our greens.
2. Sitting to read and do their homework with them when they felt up to it, not when I felt like it. I would just help them a bit by giving them a few choices. ie Before their meal, after their meal, before a nap after their nap. And so it helped them make the right decision for themselves. It Helped them become eager to want to do homework rather than the stress of being told to do an everyday routine which you could not get out of. They learned to love and want to do their homework. It got to the point when my son was 15 years and 16 he would summon me home to keep him in check as he found that when he was home alone he would get distracted. So he wanted me home to read his assignments out to me. That was for sure the funniest of times and I felt very proud and thought wow it has all been totally worth all the effort.
3. Always eating together at the dinner table and having constructive conversation. As they got a little older we would sit on the couch and have a movie night just before they went off to bed. Always their own choice of movie. When the movie ended they knew to head off to their beds by 21.30.
4. Face book days crept up and I allowed them to have accounts which we had discussed I would check and know everything up until a certain age where of course they would be able to have their full privacy. We set time frame where by they would sit for an hour a day and as they got older a little longer. Another funny time was when my daughter at 14 asked me to ban her and confiscate her phone so she does not over spend time in Facebook. Absolutely amazing achievements.
5. Friend days, where they had their friends round or where they could sleep over at a friends.
We learned to Respect each other as unique individuals and learned to have full understanding of each others needs and wants.
Both my children where at my speech as I wanted them both there.
As my speech went on I had great interaction with the parents and when It came to an end, we let both of them speak and share their own story and experience of how we all managed to co-operate together.
Knowing there where a few life coaches in the room I approached a Mrs Irene with a big smile and I asked her for her much valued feed back. She responded with gleaming eyes and shear enthusiasm “My Dear You Were AUTHENTIC!”
I replied Happily “That’s All I’ve Ever Wanted”. “To make a difference in an AUTHENTIC WAY”
She replied “Believe Me You Are Making A Difference” Your Children Are Living Proof”
It was such a beautiful ending to the evening! The Acknowledgement of an experienced Coach.
The Cherry On the Icing of the Cake!
So Be Authentic!