For my latest podcast episode, number 19 in my series, I am continuing on a path of discussion that was started on my last podcast. On that podcast, I let listeners know for first time that I am working on finishing a new book designed to help parents, and I outlined the concept for this new parenting book. The book was inspired by input and requests from parents, and it’s about how to communicate effectively with children and to get them to listen.
The backbone of this new book is something I am calling my “Ten Guiding Principles” for communicating with children. I promised on my last podcast that, beginning with this podcast, I would delve deeper into each of the ten guiding principles one and a time and one podcast at a time, and this is the first discussion in that series. The first guiding principle is that a key to communicating with children is BEING HONEST.
This premise begins with idea that children are truth seekers whether they know it or not. The other thing about children is that they do have a sensitivity to know when they are being told the truth and when they are not. Telling the truth to children demonstrates respect for the child and it also demonstrates holding expectations high for our children. I do share a sidebar story about my experience with children with autism, and that experience is that, without words, children with autism have a sensitivity to know if an adult wants to be with them or not. They have an intuition for knowing who has their back. Many of us, adults and children alike, also have that sensitivity.
Of course, why wouldn’t you tell the truth to children? I came from the generation where our parents often said “because I said so” as an answer to all sorts of questions, and in fact, that answer never was helpful. What that answer doesn’t do is promote open, honest and clear communication. If you want to develop a lifelong companionship with your own children, losing your credibility early in a child’s development would be very damaging to that goal. Honesty is the most effective and fulfilling way to begin your relationship with your child.
The next podcast will focus on the second guiding principle from my new book for parents, so please stay tuned for that. Thanks for visiting and for listening. You can hear Podcast 19 here: