Have you ever been in that awkward situation of asking a child a question and the parent answers for him/her as if they weren’t present? There is the slightest shift in the eyes of the child that can go unnoticed or it can break a heart. Not being trusted wears a soul down. Imagine if someone constantly spoke for you.
How do we learn to trust our children? How do we break our habits of stepping in, answering questions, ordering their food for them at restaurants because we are afraid of silence or don’t want them to feel uncomfortable which makes us uncomfortable?
There are three actions we practice intentionally as Socratic Guides at ROA that work wonders at home, too:
Pause (take comfort in the discomfort).
Then step back again.
Try it the next time your natural inclination is to rush over, fix, solve, repair, clean up, make amends or speak for.
Practice the hard work of waiting.
The trust will come because the children will build up their confidence to do more things for themselves and earn your trust. I can assure you, it will make you proud, one day. Are you ready to loosen the reins and witness what your child is truly capable of?