My wife and I started the month-long Accelerated Wisdom Program with Cynthia.
We came primarily to open up communication with our 13 year old daughter. She wasn’t telling us much about what she was thinking or feeling and that was a concern because of future potential issues that teens face.
At the end of our initial four hour session, I was astonished to realize that what I thought were empathetic and encouraging comments, were actually keeping my daughter from talking.
I would say things that apparently felt like an interrogation, or were about me rather than her. These are two communication blocks called interrogating and me-tooism.
I knew what I was doing wasn’t the best but I didn’t know why and what to do instead. Cynthia totally understood my communication errors. I left our first session focusing on stopping myself so my daughter would have space to talk.
That week, she came home telling us that she wanted to drop a class at school. I wanted to cut her off and jump in with my ideas and a story about myself which would have shut her down in the past. Instead, I remembered that I needed to give her space to talk so I stopped. I just said, “Okay” in a non-committal way.
I was amazed that she kept talking! I was even able to say, that we could talk about it more later and help her make a decision is she wanted.
Just this simple awareness and willingness to try Cynthia’s advice has made me feel closer to my daughter. I think she will learn to trust me more and share more as I keep practicing how to listen openly without judgment, interrupting her, or talking about myself.
Thank you so much, Cynthia. Your wisdom is amazing and you give us the exact guidance we need to hear.
To learn more about communication blocks and how to listen openly, read these other insightful articles.
©2015 Cynthia Klein, Bridges 2 Understanding, has been a Family Success Coach since 1994. She works with parents and organizations who want more cooperation, mutual respect and understanding between adults and children. Cynthia presents her expertise through speaking and private parenting coaching sessions. She writes the Middle School Mom column for the Parenting on the Peninsula magazine. She works with parents of 4 – 25 year-old children. Contact Cynthia at bridges2understa.wpstagecoach.com or 650. 679.8138 to have a complementary discovery session about finding solutions to your challenges. http://wp.me/p2TgAe-No