We often hear people talk about quality time with their child in order to develop a stronger bond. Quality is defined by Wikipedia as “a high degree of excellence”. This means therefore, that you should spend time with your child in an excellent manner.
How could this be done? The following are “quality-time” methods to strengthen your bonds with your child:
1. Have a heart to heart with your child.
Stay in a place where there are no distractions. Concentrate on what he is saying and “listen”. Let your child do the talking. Ask him what his dreams are, his plans. Does he have a current problem? How is school? For an older child you can gently ask about his relationships, his roommate etc. Don’t interrogate him like an FBI agent. Let these come out gradually. It would be better if he reveals things voluntarily.
It may take several “sessions” before he does. Don’t force it. It takes time for someone to open up, even with parents, especially if those parents are, most of the time, busy.
2. Play with your child.
It doesn’t matter what game you play, as long as you do. It maybe a ball game, word game, indoor game. There are many games out there from which you both could learn from.
3. Spend time with nature.
You could go hiking, picnicking, fishing, skydiving, or swimming. Being outdoors is not only healthy but also educational. You would also be exposing your child to a variety of activities that would provide him a wide area of interests to choose from. These activities would decrease the likelihood of him being interested in drugs or other undesirable hobbies.
4. Visit historic places .
This is educational and will enhance your child’s knowledge of history. Be sure you read something about the places before you go, so you could enlighten him and there would be a lively conversation.
5. Watch a movie.
Introduce him to movies that can impart a moral lesson. As much as possible, avoid violent and “draining” movies that usually leave you melancholic..
6. Watch a ball game .
You could watch a football or a basketball game together. Who are his favorite teams? Watch the game with him and notice how he will warm up to you in no time at all.
7. Read a book.
Reading a book together is a productive activity. Take turns on reading and look-up in the dictionary any word that one of you does not understand. Try to read a book every month or every two weeks.
8. Spend time just romping around
The best time for this is before he goes to bed. You can have pillow-fights or “tickling”, or “back-rubbing” sessions. This could be done also when you wake him up in the morning.
Be enterprising and discover activities which your child could enjoy. Allow your child to express himself feely during any of your activities with him. Instruct him to communicate with you his misgivings or thoughts. Assure him that no matter what happens, you’ll always be there for him.