Children are “feelers”. When we speak to them, they are not listening to what we say as much as the vibe behind what we’re saying. If they feel the vibe and it’s inviting, they communicate with that, not our words.
Women tend to communicate the same way subconsciously.
Because I know this, I can sit with children and in just a few minutes open them wide up and they’ll tell me anything. Parents are always amazed to see me do this. But, anyone can do this if they know how children really communicate.
If you learn how to say what you want to say embedded in a feeling, you will become a master at communicating with children.
The vibe of what you say should first create a container. In this container, the child is safe and free to express themselves. This container is where they can go to for emotional strength and safety.
Once the foundation is set, you can take them anywhere and they’ll happily follow.
It’s not what we say that gets through to children or even adults for that matter, it’s the emotion flowing in the undercurrent that people communicate with.
If I want to communicate with a child, I first set the foundational feeling that says “I feel you, you are safe, we are connected and secure”. If things get awkward, we can always return back to our foundation.
I wrote about this in Painless Parenting. I call it “syncing up”. Like when we plug an ipod into a computer. At first, the two need to sync up before any effective communication can happen between the two.