“When you give other people the gift of your attention and empathy, it makes them feel understood and they become more open to hearing what’s on your mind.”
Dr. Michael Nichols
Research shows that the more our brain is stimulated, the more our neuronal neuralconnections grow through loving interactions with others. So, if we can engage our children in the early stages with a lot of compassionate conversations, they will develop better communication skills from the get-go. This, we know, will translate into successful students and adults.
Parents must be the example by teaching siblings how to use optimism, serenity, and positive words to resolve conflicts with each other. When parents bring the principles of Compassionate Communication into their families, their children show less aggressive behavior and get along better with their siblings. By Parents paying close attention and listening carefully to their children with empathy and compassion, they gain an awareness of their own emotional states and the emotional states of their youth.
Use these easy-to-apply core elements of compassionate communication and build greater mutual respect and understanding skills:
- A kind facial expression- Recall a specific, pleasant memory to change your facial expression and to inspire trust in others
- Keep a soft gaze and a half-smile on your face (even if, initially, you don’t feel like it)
- Use a warm tone of voice and speak softly
- Gentle body gestures – Stretch gently and slowly, and adopt a relaxed position. When you relax your body starts to express itself.
- Slow speech rate -when you slow down your rate of speech you influence in a positive way how the other person feels
- Brevity – The brain can only hold up to 20 seconds of information or 7-10 words at once. Anything else we speak over that limit is discarded or becomes more difficult to grasp and retain long term.
Waldman, Robert. Newberg, Andrew Words Can Change Your Brain. New York City. Avery Publishing, June 14, 2012.