Wednesday, July 6, 2011


Courtesy of Photo Express
One of the things that I have noticed is that it is a lot easier for me to stay engaged with my youngest children.  I am not sure if it is because they do not care if I am busy or not and rush at me or if it is the way I feel revitalized when I am with them.  It paying attention to this, I have noticed that I do not give the same amount of attention to my wife and oldest son.  I notice with them I tend to multitask and that I do not give them my undivided attention.  So I am trying to be more aware of situations were I am not giving my full and undivided attention to my wife and oldest son.  Here are some of the things that I am trying to do to be a better listener and to pay attention to them more.
1.  Put down the phone.  My wife has had accused me of have my phone glued to my hand.  While I try and deny this, she is right.  I have a tendency to pay to much attention to my phone apps and not my wife.
2.  Mute the TV.  We are in the middle of baseball season and if the Braves are playing, I try to have the game on in the background.  This also causes me to look at the TV a lot and not pay attention to wife and son.
3.  Listen first, speak second.  This is not easy for me.  I guess you could say that I am a type A, ENTJ personality and it is hard for me to do this.  I try to, as best as I can, to listen (no I don't do it well all the time, but I am trying)
4.  Make eye contact.  I have a tendency to look around, walk away while talking to do something, or wonder. This can make conversation difficult.  So, I am trying to make eye contact.
5.  Ask for clarification.  It could just be me or it could be all teenagers, but my son talks in guttural sounds and grunts.  While he calls this a language, I don't necessarily translate it that way.  In the past, I would just act like I knew what it was, but now I ask for clarification.  I find that this is helpful and makes it clear that I truly understand what he is talking about.

These are just some of the things that I am doing.  It is not perfect, but it is an attempt to try and be a better father and husband.  What are some of the things you do to keep engaged with family.

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