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The Amazing Benefit to our Children (and us!) When We Know How to Really Listen

What do you think of your listening skills? Would you say you’re an excellent listener? If so, you’re joining about 86% of people. The truth is, though (sorry!), that likely you’re listening at a shallow level, missing a lot of the cues and important information that you could be picking up when you’re in conversation with your children. True active listening takes intention, effort and energy - and it’s worth it.  

Children thrive when they feel heard and seen, and like they are important. We make tiny choices every day that either move them toward us or push them away. Learning to listen is a fundamental coaching skill you’ll learn in Parent as Coach.

I teach coaching skills to adults, and after they’ve learned the power of true listening, they inevitably come to class and say, ‘I cannot believe the difference listening is making in my professional life, and my family’s lives.’ It’s a profound learning and experience given that it’s a skill we all think we’re good at. 

In Parent as Coach, we’ll talk about what deep listening is:

  • Listening without interrupting

  • Listening without forming your own opinion before your child is done speaking

  • Listening to your child’s body language, energy, cadence and tone in their voice

  • Listening to the end of their sentences, and leaving a little bit of silent space in case they have more to say

  • Listening without jumping in with advice.

Activity to deepen your listening

When you interact with your child(ren) today, notice how many times you naturally jump in on top of their words, or cut them off to give them your good, wise parenting advice. Make a little tick on a piece of paper every time you get distracted with your own thoughts, move away from them as they’re speaking (hey, we all get it, literally no one but an 8 year old wants to hear that much about Roblux), or assume you know exactly what they are going to say and where they’re going with their story. 

Then, start to play with providing a little more silence, a little less of you and a little more of them. When they’re done talking you might ask, ‘wow, what more can you say about that?’ or, ‘what else happened?’ or, ‘how does that make you feel?’ ← Just one good question can make them feel heard and seen, and like they matter to you.

Learn more about Parent as Coach here


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I'm Kelly

This is a space to get tips, coaching inspiration, get to know me a little better and engage into learning.

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