Pretty much every parent agrees that it’s important to connect well with our children.
But whether you struggle with a particular age or have personality clashes with your child, sometimes connecting is easier said than done!
So just in time for Valentine’s Day, we’ve collected a few practical examples of ideas to connect with your children and communicate in all sorts of ways, “Child, you are LOVED no matter what!” (P.S. You can use them when it’s not Valentine’s Day, too!)
1. Love them — ESPECIALLY when they misbehave.
It’s always important for kids to know they’re loved, but it’s especially important when they misbehave, because that’s when they deserve it the least. So when they struggle or misbehave, love them right in the middle of it all.
2. Bless others together.
A great way to connect is to serve others together. Nothing grows a shared sense of unity, joy, and purpose like blessing others together. Whether it be packing meals to feed hungry people, praying for others, or even blessing each other by completing chores together, working together communicates the message that “we’re on the same team”.
3. Be patient.
If connection is hard, don’t give up hope. Sometimes kids’ rejection of attempts at connection are less about you and more about something they’re struggling with. Be patient. Over time, and with prayer, you can be persistent about slowly coaxing your child into connection.
4. Ask them how they like to be loved.
In the quest to make sure your kids know you love them no matter what, it’s important to check if the messages you’re trying to communicate are actually landing! A simple conversation about “What makes you feel most loved?” can go a long way toward laying the foundation for connection.
5. Give them the best Valentine’s Gift — YOU!
Despite the fuss made about kids wanting stuff, often the thing they want most is you! In fact, research has shown that when kids get more of you they actually want less stuff. So spend some time with them. Do their favorite activity with them. Listen to them. Look at them. Just be present with them.
You’ll be glad you did.