Communication is like magic. A Child who knows how to communicate effectively has the skills to change the world. On the latest episode of the What I Wish My Mother Taught Me Podcast, my guest Anna Scoby teaches us how we can improve our children’s communication skills. Anna Scoby is a Communication Coach and founder of Project Be You, an educational non-profit dedicated to youth. She specializes in taking intimidating factors out of public speaking. Anna and I discuss the importance of teaching kids how to communicate effectively.
The Magic of Communication
Kids need to develop good communication skills at a young age because communication is like magic. With one word, you can fall in love and start a war; you can build someone up or break them down.
Teaching kids this magic of communication and the power of words can open up many opportunities. If they know how to communicate, they can communicate well, collaborate, create, and advocate for themselves effectively. Effective communication is the ability to tell another person how you feel and the ability to establish boundaries for any relationship. Communication is an everyday skill that enables us to speak our truths and establish boundaries within all of the relationships in our lives.
How to use your Child’s Love Language to Improve Communication with Them.
Expression of love is a form of communication. Children learn to communicate through their daily interactions with their parents; understanding your child’s love language is essential in developing healthy communication for your relationship and with others outside the home. Children need love children, like adults, give and receive love differently. By learning to recognize your child’s love language, you can learn and understand their personality, identify the root of how they receive verbal and non-verbal information, helps you to connect more profoundly with them, and truly begin to love them as they want to be loved.
Acts of Service
Action is the best approach for a child whose love language is acts of service. Words are great, but actions are best. How can you apply acts of service to your child? Apply acts of service love language through demonstration. Do nice things for them, and be involved in their activities and projects. The simplest example is saying yes when the child asks you to stop whatever you are doing and play with them; taking an interest in your child’s love of baking by baking with them. Another way to show acts of service is to surprise your child by doing their chore when you notice that they have been working really hard in activities and school.
If a child’s love language is receiving gifts, then get creative. Gift giving isn’t about expensive gifts, but doing simple things and regular surprises is good, like a letter in a lunch box or their school binder. To establish better communication with a child whose love language is receiving gifts, use the gifts as an opportunity to express your love and have the child express themselves, their emotions, thoughts, and current events in their lives. Give gifts that spark opportunities for conversations.
Words of Affirmation
Being intentional about the words used with and for kids whose primary love language is words of affirmation is important to ensure a strong relationship with the child. Kids whose primary love language is words of affirmation enjoy praise, specifically praise about things they’ve done. Harsh words and criticism are easily hurtful to them.
Say I love you often and praise their efforts often. When they take the dishes out, praise them for it; when they clean their room, praise them for it. Simply praising them for being a part of your life speaks volumes and will do wonders for your relationship.
A child whose primary love language is quality time wants time with you. Spending time with you is what they love. Active listening is crucial to a child whose love language is quality time. When listening, show an interest in what they are saying by asking questions and reacting positively; play games together to spend time together.
Kids whose primary love language is physical touch love hugs and kisses. An embrace in the morning, jumping into bed with them in the morning, randomly kissing them, and holding their hands while out and about.
The key is paying attention to your children’s words and actions. How they interact with you will most likely inform their love language. Establishing strong communication with your kids requires you to be intentional about how they receive and apply information. Your child’s ability to communicate with others is directly related to how they communicate with you. Give your kids the tools to express themselves confidently in and outside the home.
Thanks for exploring this topic with me