Declare your home a “snark-free zone” where bad-mouthing others is off-limits.
Go on walks as a family and talk about whatever comes to mind.
Use lots of different means to write your kids notes telling what you appreciate about them: Facebook, texts, post-its on a mirror, and more.
Sometimes sit or lie down with your child at night and reflect on the day.
Write down the funny or wonderful things your kids do and tell them those stories later on.
When speaking with and listening to small children, lower yourself or bring them up so you are at their eye level.
When communicating with your child, focus on her or him, not on your phone, computer, or any other distraction. They’ll notice if you don’t.
Create traditions that involve communication, such as talking over the day’s highs and lows at mealtime. Over time, these little connections will build a strong bond.
Offer kids encouragement (“That looks fun,” “I can tell you are interested in that”) more than praise (“Good job,” “You’re so smart”). It encourages them to grow.
If you only tell your children the behavior you don’t want from them, they’ll never know what you do want. Be clear about your expectations.
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