I thought I would write this post for anyone who’s thought of trying a listening partnership, but feels like time is a factor that holds them back. And if you have no idea what a listening partnership is check out this great article here from Hand in Hand parenting instructor Roma Norriss.
Starting a listening partnership can feel like another item on the to-do list, but they actually ‘make’ time. When we clear our head of all our stresses and anxiety, the rest of our lives actually go more smoothly, so that time is a great investment.
For example, my house is often a mess (I spend a lot of time writing!) and I’m often too tired to tidy up. But after a listening partnership, I feel energised to tackle the mess. After clearing out my head, I’m all ready to clear out my living space as well.
When I started listening partnerships, I also realised tiredness can be emotional. Emotions are embodied things, so when we clear out those negative emotions, we have energy to tackle the physical work of being a parent. And when my house is tidy, I know where things are, which saves me the time of looking for things.
When our head is clear, we’re more likely to think of fun, creative ways to connect with our children. When our children are better connected they’re more likely to allow us time to cook dinner without being desperate for attention, or even enjoy the process of tidying up! When we need to get out the door in a hurry they will be more likely to co-operate. We save time, because our relationships are going more smoothly.
When I first started listening partnerships I was feeling much more energised, and was able to give up caffeine. Although I’ve lapsed (several 100 times!) I find when I get a lot of listening time, and don’t need caffeine, I sleep much better. I don’t wake in the night so much, and I jump out of bed much more easily. I probably gain an hour or two simply by being more energised, and sleeping better.
Recently I was reflecting on a trainee Hand in Hand parenting instructor who asked me how come I blog so often. And though there’s a number of reasons I think it may be mainly down to listening partnerships. Listening partnerships helped me work on issues around confidence and self-belief. Listening partnerships helped me to get my priorities straight and think about what I did and didn’t want to dedicate my time to.
Time is rare and precious in this busy life, but when we have this amazing tool to release negative emotions, and think clearly, we can make the most of every moment we have, and build the life of our dreams.
To learn more about the skills of listening that we use in listening partnerships, Hand in Hand parenting have alistening partnerships booklet, and a self-guided study course, with videos, reading materials and everything you need to know to be a good listener.
The Parenting by Connection starter class, allows you to experience listening time with a qualified instructor and get the chance to make connections with other parents too.