Have you ever experienced moments when you felt like you and your wife just weren’t on the same page? Do your opinions and ideas seem to fall on deaf ears at home? Maybe you even feel like no one in your family is listening to you.
I know I have felt that way at times. And those moments can be very difficult. If I’m not careful, they can also turn into major issues that erode the relationship that matters most.
When moments like this happen, you (and I) are experiencing a lack of connection.
But there is hope. Learning to connect is a skill, and it can be improved no matter what circumstance you’re facing.
Over the next few weeks, I’ll be sharing connecting principles and practices from John Maxwell's book Everyone Communicates, Few Connect: What the most effective people do differently to show how connection at home is vital to succeed in our roles as dads.
There are many challenges we all face when it comes to our most important relationships, and as John Maxwell says, “If you are facing connecting challenges, you can overcome them with connecting choices.” For many dads, developing connection at home feels challenging, and they aren't quite sure what connecting choices to make. This series will clarify the right choices and put them into a context you can apply to your most important relationships.
"If you are facing connecting challenges, you can overcome them with connecting choices." ~ John C. Maxwell
As I share what I've learned from applying the connecting principles and practices, I hope you will be encouraged. I've made so many mistakes in the process, but I still see the results today.
Let’s start with the most important principle to understand:
Connecting increases your influence in every situation
The rewards of creating connection is a deep and fulfilling relationship with our partners and creating an environment that will help your children be more successful in their lives. Dr. Laura Markham, the creator of AhaParenting.com says, "Parenting effectively depends above all on your connection to your child. Period."
If you want to get on the same page with your partner and do better as a dad, here are five simple ways to start the journey to connection and increase your [positive] relational influence.
1. Listen more than you talk. There is nothing more powerful than giving another person your undivided attention, and making them feel like you understand, or can empathize. Dads, if your partner or children don't feel like you listen to them, it's time to start.
2. Bring something of value for every interaction. This can be a positive word, affirmation of something you observed, or expressing appreciation for any part of who they are or what they mean to you. If you feel like it, random gifts are always a nice way to express how much you value them. If you're not familiar with Gary Chapman's classic book The Five Love Languages, this is a great place to learn how to bring value to your partner.
3. Ask your partner if there is anything you can do to help them, then follow through and do it. You can also perform a random act of kindness, helping them out with something that you know matters to them.
4. Find ways to compliment your partner. Of course, make sure that all compliments follow these three rules:
Make them genuine – you must actually believe it for them to receive it.
Make them specific – generalities fall flat and feel fake. Spot something you admire, and tell them.
Repeat them often – It never gets old hearing someone you love tell you what they appreciate about you.
5. Celebrate success together. Create a new tradition, or find ways to make every success an opportunity to come together and enjoy the result as a family.
Losing connection with the people who matter most is painful, but it can be corrected. It’s also never too late to try because the rewards are worth it!
Connected Dads helps you make daily choices to build healthy relationships – both with yourself and those closest to you. That’s because when you sign up for our coaching or accelerator programs you get the proven leadership teaching of John C. Maxwell and our system of accountability.
If you’d like to experience our process then schedule a free 30 minute coaching call today.
Do you wonder about the health of your family relationships? Take the “How Connected Are You?” assessment. In less then 2 minutes you can get immediate feedback on your most important relationships