Category Archive:
Effective communication

Some Alternatives to Saying “No”

alternatives to saying no

There are some days in February that seem as if all we do as parents is say “no”. “No, Susan can’t spend the night. Your brother has the flu.” “No, you cannot go bike riding right now. It’s dark.” “No, we can’t go to the mall. It’s supposed to start snowing soon.” Bad weather, illnesses, […]



In my chiropractor’s examining room, there is a poster of two hands reaching for a handshake with the title “Together”. The poster reads: OUR JOB See you as an individual Respect your privacy and your time Provide a comfortable office Explain procedures Monitor and report progress Show you ways to get and stay well Offer […]

Know Who Your Children Are

know who your children are

Summer nights, years ago, right before the news there was a public service announcement: It’s 10 o’clock. Do you know where your children are? What I’d like to hear today is this: Do you know who your children are? When parents or grandparents contact me asking for advice about how to handle a child who […]

Listening To Ourselves With Compassion

listening to ourselves with compassion

When we do something that later we wished we hadn’t, we rarely give ourselves the level of forgiveness and understanding that we give to others. If we evaluate ourselves and subsequently change our behaviors due to negative emotions–shame, embarrassment or fear, to name only a few–we are feeding self-hatred. We are our own worst critic. […]

Learning To Request What You Need

learning to request what you need

At the heart of our relationships is the need for effective communication. Our objective is to build a relationship based on honesty and empathy. The two basic components of effective communication consists of two skills: Expressing observations, feelings and needs honestly while withholding blame and criticism. Receiving information from others without hearing blame or criticism, […]

When Needs Are Not Fulfilled

when needs are not fulfilled

Effective communication is at the heart of strong relationships. Our parenting and teaching work with children is dependent on vital relationships and communications. Effective communication is based on two essential skills: The ability to express honestly how we are, and The ability to understand from others how we are, all without giving or hearing blame […]

Connecting Needs To Feelings

connecting needs to feelings

A critical aspect of effective communication is learning how to express our needs. In our efforts to communicate effectively with others, we need to learn how to observe behavior, without evaluating, to figure out an individual’s needs. For effective communication, we need to differentiate between feelings and thoughts. We need to be aware of how […]

Learning To Express Needs

learning to express needs

Be careful for what you ask for–you might get it. To communicate to the heart of our relationships, it is important that we learn to state our needs with clarity and positiveness. Negative requests can confuse the listener and provoke resistance. When we make a request in the negative–I don’t want chocolate ice cream–the request […]

Owning Our Emotions

owning our emotions

Victor Frankl in Man’s Search for Meaning writes about our freedom residing in the space between stimulus and response. Your child hits you. Your freedom lies in the space of time between being hit, the stimulus, and your response to being hit. That moment contains your power to choose how you receive the message and […]