I don’t believe any parent sets out to lose the heart of their child.
Yet it’s not so very hard to do.
So many things vie for the hearts of our kids and attempt to capture their affections daily.
How can we help them choose us?
What will encourage our children to desire our input into their lives?
If you want to win your child’s heart but fear they may be slipping away from you, take a close look at the following list. Consider your own affections, attitudes and actions. Are you unwittingly driving them away rather than drawing them close?
How NOT To Win Your Child’s Heart
- Treat every child identically
- Consider them an interruption
- Hyper-focus on a parenting method or formula
- Create unreasonable expectations
- Discipline because you’re angry or embarrassed
- Belittle their ideas
- Withhold reasonable freedoms
- Fail to respect them
- Demand perfection
- Minimize their interests
- Respond in anger
- Use praise and encouragement sparingly
- Be unavailable or unapproachable
- Discount their feelings
- Ignore their efforts
- Consider them an enemy or problem
- Fail to express gratitude for and to them
- Refuse to make offenses right
- Maintain an irritable or annoyed attitude
- Treat a maturing young person as a child
- Embarrass, shame or put them down
- Focus only on external behavior
- Neglect to express love verbally
- Be inconsistent with requirements
- Squash their excitement and enthusiasm
- Avoid emotional connections
- Harp on mistakes or failures
- Protect possessions above their hearts
- Ignore their strengths
- Always assume the worst
- Withhold affection when displeased
- Refuse to initiate or participate in fun
- Mock their dreams
- Neglect to invest in relationship
Yes, that list actually contains more than 30 different ways you might be sabotaging opportunities to win your child’s heart. And I’m sure it’s not exhaustive.
I know you don’t WANT to do any of these things. I don’t either.
But sometimes we do. I do. We’re imperfect parents, and we will do things that turn our kids away from us.
But we don’t have to make a habit of turning our kids off.
Let’s cultivate the habit of drawing them close. Nurturing their spirits. Pursuing their hearts.
Are you unsure of how to encourage your children’s affections toward you? Then you may be interested in this ebook from Kathie Morrissey of The Character Corner.
Kathie is passionate about helping parents like you and me understand the importance of winning our kids’ hearts. As a mom to eight grown kids, she is well-acquainted with the struggle that this can be.
Too often we parents make parenting about the kids. What they are or aren’t doing. And we fail to consider our part of the equation.
The Importance of Winning Your Child’s Heart contains biblical exhortation for us to examine our side of the relationship. To consider the impact our own expectations, attitudes and interactions are having on our kids’ responses.
In addition to revealing the importance of capturing our kids’ affections, Kathie talks about:
- understanding and addressing rebellion
- purposefully pursuing the hearts of our children
- avoiding barriers to strong relationships
- restoring damaged relationships
- parenting teens
- parenting wayward children
- having hope in the midst of it all
As she says,
“The goal of gaining their hearts is not so we can control them, but rather gain the opportunity to pour into their lives, shape their values, and teach them to love God and His Word.”
Do you want to be a valuable influence in the life of your child?
Replace losing strategies, the ones that push them away, with winning ones that draw them close and make them want to be on your side.
You can purchase The Importance of Winning Your Child’s Heart from Kathie HERE.
I received a complimentary copy of this book in exchange for my honest review. Links contained in the review are not affiliate links.
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