Posts filed under ‘communications’

It’s Always About Relationship

The good news is that this has been a week of successes for me. The backstory is that I finally UNDERSTAND the message that the Universe has been sending me. I finally Get It!

For the last four weeks, I’ve been teaching parenting classes to a group of parents who want to communicate with their children more consistently.

I’m also teaching a group of millennial women (different subject) and in both instances, the connection that we’re making is because of our relationship with each other.

When there is no relationship, the person you are trying to influence could care less about what you are saying. They need to know that you care about them. Caring is the missing equation in many relationships with issues.

For example, I show my students how I feel about them by sharing parts of my life with them, and asking them about the people and circumstances in their life. They know that they matter to me and it makes it easier to “connect” with me.

In our work environments this is true as well. Your millennial workers want to know that they matter to you. They care about community and commitment as much as the company’s bottom line. If you have explanations for why your organization runs the way it does, and share that philosophy (mission) with them, you will see a different level of commitment.

Guess what? Your children are the same way (most of them). They care when they see why something matters to you. Gone are the days of “Do it because I said so.” Take time to explain what you want (from them) and why you want it. When they know that you are interested in them and their interests, they will talk to you more.

Interested in learning more about generational communications? Contact me – Ms. Parent Guru to receive information about my inspiring parenting programs for Aging Parents, Mothers and Daughters, Mothers and their Sons, Fathers and Daughters or Fathers and their Sons.

Click Here to become a part of my parenting community.

C. Lynn Williams, #MsParentguru

Family Dynamics Strategist, Author & Speaker

www.clynnwilliams.com

November 7, 2018 at 6:39 pm Leave a comment

Why Dads Have to Add Their Two Cents

When I think back to my childhood, I don’t remember my father voicing his opinions often. So when he did, it was crystal clear and quite memorable. As I got older, I realized how important his opinions were in relationship to my career decisions and the men that I dated or married. One thing about many dads is that they are quiet when it comes to the day-to-day workings of household activities and child-rearing. It may not be that way in your household, and many of the millennial fathers are very present in their opinions and in the raising of their children. I prefer that style of parenting because the energy that fathers offer is very different from the energy of mothers. Dads don’t freak out as easily as we moms do. This is quite helpful for your emotional child (tween or teen) who has daily fits of hysteria. 

The other things about fathers is that they use less words to get their point across. Less words gives your brain a chance to hear and process what was said. They also don’t repeat what they’ve said, so you have to listen and get it the first time (most dads anyway). I like that technique and share it in my Pampered Prince book to help mothers who are raising sons, communicate more effectively.

Yesterday I saw an article about a group of dads – Dads4Justice, who were pretty pissed off with how Kellogg’s was marketing their Coco Pops cereal. They considered the slogan sexist and protested to Kellogg’s. The slogan has since been changed. Click here to read the entire article. 

If you haven’t spoken to your dad in a while, give him a call. You may be surprised at what he might tell you.

Interested in learning more about your family’s dynamics? Contact meMs. Parent Guru to receive information about my inspiring parenting programs for Aging Parents, Mothers and Daughters, Mothers and their Sons, Fathers and Daughters or Fathers and their Sons.

Click Here to become a part of my parenting community.

C. Lynn Williams, #MsParentguru

Family Dynamics Strategist, Author & Speaker

www.clynnwilliams.com

September 6, 2018 at 12:56 pm Leave a comment

Why Staying Relevant With Our Adult Children Keeps Us Young

What kind of conversations do you have with your adult children? Are they meaningful? Do you feel good after talking with them?

SSBlog_BondingWithYourChildren_1400x1050-1024x768

Last week my oldest son turned 35 years old and I wanted to wish him happy birthday when it was my turn to talk. He’s my oldest child, and was 20 years old when his dad and I married, so I’m always amazed at the depth of our conversations, wondering what I can say to stay relevant when we talk. I should probably tell you that my son and I don’t talk often, like I do with my oldest daughter. That’s just the nature of mother & son relationships. Boys don’t talk nearly as much as girls, unless they (boys) are trying to work out a situation. #thepamperedprincebook

So while I waited to talk with him, thinking that our conversation would be short and sweet,  what I got was a very extensive conversation.  we probably talked about 45 minutes about things that were important to him and our relationship and it was just a wonderful conversation overall.

Portrait of a loving mother and her young adult/late teen son.

My point in staying relevant as a parent is that it keeps the lines of communications open between you and your child. It also keeps you young. I remember some of the challenges I faced when I was in my 20’s. Most of the time, I kept those challenges to myself for fear of what my mother would think of me. Once I reached out to her and realized that she wasn’t judging me, we had great talks. That was a lesson that I promised I would remember once I had kids of my own. I never wanted my children to feel stupid or that they couldn’t talk to me. I also hoped they would confide in me before talking to their friends. When they did talk to me, it made me feel young. I felt like I was part of a younger generation (because I was, compliments of them).

As a parent coach and parent of adult children, here are three (3) tips for maintaining relevancy in your relationship with your children:

  • Don’t Judge – You may think the decisions they’ve made are just dumb. But think back on some of the hair-brained decisions you made as a teen or young adult. They may not have been the best decisions, but they were yours.
  • Listen – As parents we always feel like we have to have the answers to our kids’ problems. That’s not always true or possible. Actually one of the lessons I learned most recently, is that my kids usually want me to listen and not comment. It’s not easy, but staying relevant sometimes means that we are their sounding boards and silence is golden.
  • There’s No Room For Drama – Sometimes the conversations that our adult children need or want to have with us are hair-raising and you may be inclined to say “What in the hell made you do that?“. Resist the urge to say anything negative and follow my advice in the tip #2 – Listen!

I’m looking forward to sharing this Easter birthday weekend with most of my blended family, with the exception of my middle daughter, who wasn’t able to join us. I plan on taking my own advice and listening, enjoying my sons and daughter and having a lot of fun. I wish you and your family a wonderful Easter or Passover holiday. 

Want to learn more about your family’s dynamics? Contact me – Ms. Parent Guru to receive information about my inspiring parenting programs for Aging Parents, Mothers and Daughters, Mothers and their Sons, Fathers and Daughters or Fathers and their Sons.

Click Here to become a part of my parenting community.

C. Lynn Williams, #MsParentguru

Family Dynamics Strategist, Author & Speaker

www.clynnwilliams.com

 

March 28, 2018 at 6:04 pm Leave a comment

How to Successfully Communicate With Adult Children

When my children were little, we discussed lots of different topics with them and encouraged them to talk (to us) about anything. Things that were going on in their school, with their classmates, in our family and current events were all fair game. It didn’t matter whether we liked or agreed with their thoughts or not, we encouraged them to talk about whatever was going on in their lives. 

I believed if we listened to their small issues, they would be comfortable talking with us about their bigger (scarier or life threatening) issues. While I’m sure we didn’t hear everything that occurred in their lives, listening taught me three amazing lessons!

  • Like what my kids liked
  • Be open-minded
  • Ask questions of interest

These three tips allowed me to stay relevant with my children as they became adults. As I approached adulthood, I had secrets that I never shared with my mom or dad. I didn’t want to be judged or reminded, so I didn’t share many things that were going on in my life. As much as I loved my parents, I didn’t want to hear them say, “OMG why’d you do that?” No adult really wants to hear that.

However, I wanted a more open relationship with my children, especially as they became adults. I wanted to stay relevant in their lives. As an example, I liked rock music growing up. When my son realized that I was OPEN to listening to grunge and alternative music, he would invite me to listen to new songs that he liked. “Hey Mom, listen to this.” Keeping that doorway open into his adulthood, allowed to me ask him, “So what’s new?” He could choose to either tell me about some new music he liked, or share a more personal thought or concern.

The same was true with my daughters. I wasn’t afraid to share some of my ‘young woman’ mistakes with them, hoping they wouldn’t make those same mistakes. In turn, they were comfortable sharing their life with me. On the way to learning more about them, I continue to learn more about myself. Isn’t life grand?

It’s never too late to start a conversation with your children. If it’s a new experience, start small, but be consistent. The rewards will change your relationship in a positive way.

Interested in learning more about your family’s dynamics? Contact me – Ms. Parent Guru to receive information about my inspiring parenting programs for Aging Parents, Mothers and Daughters, Mothers and their Sons, Fathers and Daughters or Fathers and their Sons.

Click Here to become a part of my parenting community.

C. Lynn Williams, #MsParentguru

Family Dynamics Strategist, Author & Speaker

www.clynnwilliams.com

February 11, 2018 at 5:01 pm Leave a comment

The Peculiar Language Between Mothers & Their Sons (reprinted)

Periodically I write articles for Moms Magazine. It’s a great resource for mothers. I encourage you to check them outmomsmagazine.com This is my article reprinted from Moms Magazine 2/16/2016

When my biological son was in his late teens, he stopped communicating with me. It was an odd time because he had started college and I didn’t see him often, so talking with him was very important to me. What I didn’t know was that he was having difficulty managing his time and assignments. I knew something was wrong, (a mother’s instinct) just didn’t know what. So my husband (his stepdad) and I took a road trip down to his campus and made a surprise visit. The conversation wasn’t easy and he continued to give us one word answers and stony looks, but we eventually understood the entire story.
I continued to use the practices and tips that I talk about in my book – The Pampered Prince: Mom Create a GREAT Relationship With Your Son and made sure that whemother-kissing-sonn I felt he was distant or needed to talk, I reached out and didn’t tell myself I was wrong. Once he knew I wasn’t just trying to “get in his business” or “wreck his life”, he talked to me.

I thought about our relationship as I watched the ABC 20/20 show where the mother of one of the Columbine shooters talked about how she didn’t acknowledge the distance she felt with her son, and how she had no idea he was planning the shooting or was so easily influenced by another boy, also a shooter. She also did what many of us do when our sons show us some attention – she thought things were much better. It was just a smokescreen to get her out of his Kool-Aid. My point here is that some of the messages we receive are a mother’s intuition and while it may not make sense, if we don’t act on it, we’re screwed.

columbine mom
It may be awkward if you are not used to conversing with your son. They are very good at ignoring us or making us feel like we are wasting their time. Push through that feeling and make some space for a conversation to begin. Inviting my son to dinner or out for ice cream worked 90% of the time. He loves both and once we start eating, the words seem to tumble out. This idea works for sons from teen to mid-twenties. Try it and let me know what happened. I would love to hear from you.

Want to learn more about how to communicate with your son? Contact me – Ms. Parent Guru to receive information about my life-changing parenting programs for blended families, aging parents, mothers and daughters or mothers and sons. Email me at: info@clynnwilliams.com

C. Lynn Williams, #MsParentguru
Author ~ Coach ~ Family Dynamics Specialist
www.clynnwilliams.com

Trying to Stay Sane While Raising Your Teen (St. Paul Press, 2010)
The Pampered Prince: Moms Create a GREAT Relationship with Your Son (St. Paul Press, 2012)
Raising Your Daughter Through the Joys, Tears & HORMONES! (220 Publishing, 2013)
NEW – Yours & Mine: The Winning Blended Family Formula (220 Publishing, 2015)

February 17, 2016 at 8:35 pm Leave a comment

Good Grief Dad…It’s Only Money

I’m on a flight back to Chicago and I overhear the following conversation between a dad and his teenage daughter. She must have asked him for something, and this is how he responded. “… Didn’t I give you $173?” Smile from the daughter (I think she was a teen). “How much did you spend? You spent all of it??? That was $173 that I put on your card!!!” His teen daughter just smiled, although this time the smile looked a little sheepish. “You spent it all at Victoria Secret?” “I can’t believe you spent all of it!”

“You and your sister got your ears pierced? Who gave you permission to get your ears pierced?” This time his younger daughter spoke up and said “Mom told us it was okay with her if it was okay with you.” The father didn’t push the conversation any further, and the next thing I knew he was joking with the non-verbal daughter.

I felt sorry for dear old dad because from that brief conversation it was obvious that his daughters had him wrapped around their fingers; he was divorced from his wife, and they had not established rules on important things like piercings. Am I ancient or what? Reply and let me know if you agree that both Mom and Dad should agree on their kids’ having piercings or tattoos before they occur. Mark it hashtag dadparenting (#dadparenting)

C. Lynn Williams
#MsParentguru
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July 12, 2014 at 8:39 pm Leave a comment

When Parents Make Mistakes

ImageParents are invincibleinfallibleHuman!

My husband and I saw Black Nativity last night and I am glad we did! Being a person of color, we usually support movies with African-American actors, directors, film writers during the first weekend the movie airs to support it financially. While I love, Forest Whitaker and Angela Bassett, I’m not crazy about musicals, so I almost missed a golden opportunity. If Black Nativity is still playing in your area, go see it! Anyway I digress… There was a line in the movie that absolutely spoke to me about PARENTING! Rev. Cobbs (Forest Whitaker), the estranged father of Naima (Jennifer Hudson) said “Parents make mistakes…I am so sorry that I meddled in your life.”

Have you ever felt that way about something that occurred between you and your teen or adult child? Were you able to admit it and have an honest conversation with your son or daughter? Or did pride keep you from opening the doors of communication with that person that you love with all of your heart and soul? The movie had another theme that has been really messing up my parenting theory about our teen (or twenty-something) daughters getting pregnant and having children without being married. When my daughter was a teen, we had the ‘SEX’ talk a few times. I wanted to make sure that she understood the consequences to getting pregnant. I felt (and told her) that she would have to move out if she got pregnant before getting married. I felt that way because she, her dad and I talked candidly about waiting until marriage to have sex; if she couldn’t wait then use birth control. I know you’re thinking OMG – it’s okay for her to have sex??? She did not get pregnant, but what if she had? Would I have made her leave home for this mistake? Would we have been estranged? What about her future? Would she have gone to college, grad school, or become the professional woman she is today?

Well, no I didn’t want her to have sex, but let’s be honest here;  part of the teen experience is that LOVELY puberty that starts to occur to our kids when they turn 12 or 13. The boys you couldn’t stand in fifth and sixth grade, now start to look a little less like wimps and more like hotties! A kiss on the lips, turns into raging hormones! Right?!? If your daughter loses control (and has sex) she’s screwed (no pun intended) unless she is taking birth control. Again I digress. So for mothers like me who take that hard line, what are our daughters supposed to do if they find themselves pregnant? That was the dilemma of Mary (Grace Gibson), the very pregnant and homeless teen in Black Nativity. She said, “I made a mistake and was kicked out. I have nowhere to go, so here I am pregnant and homeless.”

The other theme that caught my interest was the relationship between the mom (Naima) and her teenaged son (Langston). God, she really loved him (and he loved her too), but as a single mom trying to make a living for the two of them, she was unequipped to offer him the masculine discipline & love that he needed to grow into a man. Well I won’t tell the entire story, but I’d like to end with this: if you, and your son or daughter have not spoken to each other because of miscommunications or disappointments, reach out and call them and begin to mend the fences. There is nothing worse that not having an opportunity to say “I’m sorry” and having regrets for the rest of your life.

 

C. Lynn Williams, #MsParentguru

Author & Parent Coach

Trying to Stay Sane While Raising Your Teen (St. Paul Press, 2010)
The Pampered Prince: Moms Create a GREAT Relationship with Your Son (St. Paul Press, 2012)
Raising Your Daughter Through the Joys, Tears & HORMONES! (220 Communications, 2013)

January 14, 2014 at 11:29 am Leave a comment

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