Child and parent bonds are the most crucial when it comes to good parenting and establishing fluent communication with your child. After all, a strong connection with your child is what makes parenting worthwhile and fulfilling.
Through research done, it was revealed that the key to maintaining a healthy relationship is to counter every negative interaction with five positive ones. As parents tend to resort to scolding, nagging and yelling as forms of discipline, establishing positive interactions frequently becomes all the more important as a parent. Hence, here are some tips and habits to incorporate into your daily routine that do not take up much effort but can help strengthen the bonds with your child.
Have 12 physical connections every day
Virginia Satir, a family therapist, once said, “We need 4 hugs a day for survival. We need 8 hugs a day for maintenance. We need 12 hugs a day for growth.”
A hug before bed, a kiss on the forehead before school or just exchanging eye contact and a smile are easy ways to show signs of affection and establish a physical connection with your child. These simple acts might not be much, but they remind your child that you care and love him even if you do not say it out loud. Especially after a scolding, giving a simple pat on the shoulder tells him that you still love him despite his wrongdoings.
Discard technology during interactions
Whenever interacting with your child, turn off your mobile phone or place it at an unreachable distance. This simple act tells your child that he has your undivided attention and that he is important enough for you to set aside any forms of distraction. Even if it’s having a conversation in the car, turning off the radio when talking can increase attention paid to the conversation.
Have one-on-one time
Spending just 15 minutes with each child separately and doing what they want can help tighten bonds with your children and ensure that you do not practise favouritism especially if you have more than one child. Try to do what they want to and support their ideas, partaking actively during this time.
Encourage your child to be emotional to you and express his feelings openly. Try not to shut down his emotions and let him express himself. Allow your child to know that he can trust you with his emotions and that you will always be there for him. Creating a safe space for him to express himself allows him to feel like he can trust you and thus be closer to you.
Plan some time before bed to snuggle up with your child and invite him to talk about his day. Be okay to be vulnerable and encourage him to do likewise. Listen attentively and acknowledge his feelings. Try not to resolve his feelings unless he asks for it. Reassure your child that you will be there to listen to the concerns he has and resolve it together with him if he needs. This is especially crucial as he grows up.