The older your athletes get, the less enthusiastic they become about answering parental questions. Some parents are able to easily back off, but for others it can be hard to let go.
Whether it’s curiosity or concern that drives us parents, we must be smart with our questions.
Too many questions will shut them up.
Too vague of questions will leave us wondering.
Too few questions may cause them to doubt our interest.
Sports parents, if you really want to know how practice or school went and a straightforward question isn’t getting you anywhere, here are some questions to replace “how was practice?” Hopefully they will give you the insight you are looking for.
Notice that all of questions require more than a yes or no answer. “Yeah” and “Nope” don’t shed much light on what’s going on in your child’s world.
Of course, questions must be asked when your child is willing to answer. Maybe try over an after-practice snack or during dinner. Learning how to listen and when to ask good questions is an art, not a science and bombarding your child with inquiries when they walk through the door is not when they’ll be most receptive. Be patient – you’ll get more out of your conversations.
Janis Meredith is a family life coach who wants to help all parents raise champions. You can find out more at rcfamilies.com.