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071 – Using the skills as a parent

Katie and Jonathan Trotter join Adam J. Salgat to discuss how we utilize our skills when working directly with our children and co-parenting. Listen close as many real-life examples are shared.

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Introduction 0:07
Welcome to the listen first podcast brought to you by the Chapman foundation for caring communities. Our vision and mission is to strengthen relationships and build stronger communities through listening, leadership, care and service to create a truly human connection. Learn and partner with us as we imagine a society in which people care about each other. And listen first.

Adam Salgat 0:38
Welcome to the listen first podcast. I’m your host, Adam Salgat. As our community listens transitions into the champion foundation for caring communities. This podcast will continue to be a tool to refresh the teachings of the communication skills course. It will also allow us to learn more about the people inside the organization and the businesses we partner with. On today’s podcast, we welcome in facilitator Jonathan Trotter, and strategic engagement leader Katie Trotter. The three of us discuss how we utilize our skills when we’re directly working with our children, and how we utilize them. While co parenting. Listen close as there are lots of real life examples that hopefully trigger you to think about how you can improve your parenting style. Well, welcome back to the podcast. Jonathan, thanks so much for joining us again, on the podcast. How are you doing today?

Unknown Speaker 1:36
Awesome. How are you?

Adam Salgat 1:37
I’m doing pretty well. And today, we’ve invited you’re better half as many people would potentially can say, and you know, the old cliche goes, your wife, Katie, Katie, how are you?

Unknown Speaker 1:48
I’m doing great. Thanks for having us, Adam.

Adam Salgat 1:51
And welcome. Today’s topic is around parenting. And we’re going to that’s a really broad scope. But I think we’re gonna focus on two certain areas. One of them being how we utilize the skills when working directly with our children. And then the other piece that we’ll get to will be how we utilize the skills when co parenting, so how we’re helping each other out and what we’re doing to connect in that space. Jonathan, let me start with you. Tell me a little bit about a skill that you utilize when you’re working directly with one of your girls.

Speaker 3 2:23
Oh, boy, well, I can remember to utilize the skills.

Adam Salgat 2:28
That’s a good point.

Speaker 3 2:31
I think probably one of the biggest. For me, that was difficult, but probably the most helpful was empathy. And so I grew up in an empathetic household. And so learning that my child is screaming, because they’re upset because they can’t have a cookie or a piece of candy, like understanding that they were upset and that it means the world to them that they can’t have that cookie not be stepping in like, it’s not really that big of a deal, right. But it’s trying to understand where they’re coming from. And it’s amazing, a lot of the times with our littlest one who’s now five and a half, but even when she was two or three, before a temper tantrum may ensue. If you just got down on her level and showed some empathy towards her a lot of times, she would just pat me on the back and just say it’s okay to add or something like that. So it was pretty, pretty impressive to see how valuable that was, even with a two or three year old.

Adam Salgat 3:25
I’d reiterate that with my two, two year old right now that we just had an experience today, of getting the kids ready to my wife is taking them swimming, and she wants to put a swimsuit on right now. And I could have, you know, we could have handled it a lot of different ways, you know, just pulling the swimsuit away and yelling and saying, No, you need to get these clothes on. But I tried to understand that that was a big deal to her. So I just got close to her and explained, you need to put on nice clothes, and you will put your bathing suit on at the other. You know, once you get there. And she seemed to accept it. That’s not always gonna be the case. Right? Sometimes they they’re really dead set, and it’s super important. And they maybe go into a tantrum mode. But I think understanding, like you said the empathy trying to identify and understand that this is something that’s very important to them to us. Well, it doesn’t truly, it’s not a big deal, right? We can say it all the time about a lot of things that our toddlers are going through. Not a big deal, right? But to them it is right. And so they’re identifying with it differently. What about What about you, Katie, any skill that comes to mind or dealing directly with your kids?

Speaker 4 4:35
I think for me that reflective listening has been huge. We have our oldest daughter is just turned 12. And it’s a whole new world of trying to have conversations back and forth to learn more about what’s going on inside her head and within her friend groups. And when I would before jumping into a lot of asking questions or trying to solve problems for her or use everything as a teaching moment, and really to be able to just kind of step back and use some of those skills to get trying to open up it’s been really powerful.

Adam Salgat 5:02
Any, any specific examples that have been coming to mind when you think about maybe the monkey poaching the idea of, you know, not taking on her problems and letting her try to solve through them. You know, I’m sure at the age of 12, you’re, I have a buddy who has a 10 year old and I can tell at her birthday party, she was working through social situation. So I’m guessing there’s a handful of those that are coming up, and have come up over the last couple of years.

Speaker 4 5:26
Yeah. And it’s interesting too, because sometimes you jump into solve the first problem they bring to you. And then later on, find out, that’s not really what’s going on here. So we did, we do have a lot of situations of coming up around friends, and the way that things are being communicated and when arguments come up. And so with the reflective listening, it’s been helpful to replace my initial reaction, which is to say, here’s a really great thing that you could say or do in that situation, to just model good behavior and trying to inspire them to do exactly how you would in that kind of situation. And instead, when in a particular situation, we are sitting up on the kitchen counters and reflectively listening and just being able to state back what I thought she was thinking and feeling we were two hours in and I realized what was really bothering her was something that had happened with friends from two years before. And it wasn’t really the first thing that she brought up. So for me just being able to recognize, one, it wasn’t effective for me to just try to make her think and feel the way that I thought she should. But to to realize that there’s just so much going on inside of them that we won’t know if we don’t make space for them.

Adam Salgat 6:32
Right? It’s such, it’s good to remember that now I’m going to ask a difficult question. Maybe neither of you have an answer to this. But what do we do when we don’t remember to do that? You know what I mean? Because it is hard. We say it all the time. We’re humans, we make mistakes, we’re gonna forget our skills. What What can we do if maybe we look back on situation? And we say to ourselves, oh, my gosh, I totally brushed through what they had to say I gave them my opinion. And I moved on because of whatever reasons I had. But what kind of options? Do you present people? Or, you know, maybe give someone when we’re not doing the best we could?

Speaker 4 7:09
I think Adam, Jonathan and I had a chance to lead a webinar called How to be an awesome partner, even when you mess up. And I think so many of those skills really still apply in parenting, because we want to model for our kids what we hope they do someday, right. So the idea of going back, don’t just internally think, Oh, I’m going to do better the next time. But we’ve had to go back and do repair work to say, you know, hey, Ellie, I’m really sorry, I did not handle that conversation the way that I meant to. I jumped in before you had a chance to finish I’d like to try again.

Adam Salgat 7:38
talked about that a little bit in your last podcast, the ability to to admit when you’re making a mistake, or admit when you’ve made a mistake.

Speaker 3 7:46
I just had a great example. This happened last night, trying to get our youngest to bed just now five and a half. And she had walked in our bedroom like three times. And she was asking me to take the lid off of her cup of water so she could go get more water. I said Audrey, you just need to go to bed now. So she she goes to bed, and I hear her crying a little bit or whimpering. So I went in there and said goodnight to Ellie. And I looked up there and she sits up and she looks at me goes dad. Oh, because I told her I was disappointed. So I’m really disappointed in you right now. And she said that she went to shows dad, I just want to know why you’re disappointed in me when I’m just trying to get a cup of water. It was like holy cow. Again, right having to go back and look yeah, probably did not handle that all that well. So I got her a cup of water.

Adam Salgat 8:42
Right? And you know, there’s a balance of expectation for bedtime, because I’ve been in the exact same boat with both of our kids expectations for bedtimes. But same time, you know, also not getting too frustrated, right? Because it is just bedtime. So there needs to be a little bit of wiggle, right. But man, it’s not it’s not easy at all. And when you were, Katie, when you were mentioning reflective listening, we were just on a week vacation, which by the way, was so much fun. I got to spend so much time with my girls. And but I will say full time, full time full time dad with three kids. That’s physically exhausting, especially for me. And I was like, I missed my laptop a little bit, I need to go back. For like a six hour day, I just I need to sit and not worry about that kid running through a screen or this kid crawling on the floor and picking up dog food. You know, so I will say it was awesome to spend that time with them and during vacation. It was easier to do it. But so back to your reflective listening it was easier to do this the idea of cleaning off that whiteboard idea of clearing our mind and being able to actually hear what they’re saying because we’re not too preoccupied with everything going on. So during vacation that was easier. And you know, as obvious reasons, you know, not too occupied with work but But now this week, you know, day four being back into the work week, already, I can tell like when we sat down for dinner last night and things like that, you know, all that you do is you’re on the whiteboard, all of the things you’re thinking about that you got to do. So one of the skills that you know, is kind of a sub, a sub skill or a sub the most word I’m looking for, like, tip, I guess just a tip about that reflective listening, is for me, that whiteboard, the idea of being able to clear my mind and actually hear what they have to say when when there’s opportunity to listen,

Speaker 4 10:30
I will say, Adam, I feel almost bad that I’m the one jumping in here because I feel like it’s a job that Jonathan has done a much better job with, of being able to be fully present with the kids. But I think for me, that whiteboard, too, I’ve had to do like the physical shift in my posture, to remind myself, because if I’m working on the laptop, or I’m helping to make dinner, or we’re clearing the table, and they start talking, it’s much easier for me to let things keep filling up my whiteboard of the things that I’m doing, instead of making myself physically shift, you know, for the toddler, you’re crouching down and getting on every level. With Ellie, sometimes I have to make myself sit or put my hands in my lap. So I’m not tempted to start fidgeting and doing something else at the same time. But that’s been Yeah, that’s been an ongoing battle for me.

Adam Salgat 11:11
Let me ask you, maybe Jonathan has a comment here about cellphone use. I don’t, I don’t know for sure what your cell phone use is like or either one of you. But I personally, because I’m so connected to it for multiple reasons, checking stocks, checking email, checking whatever, I at times, purposefully go leave it in the other room, because I know, if it’s near me, I’m gonna want to check it. So if I got it, I gotta get it away. What about what about you guys? Either of you make those types of conscious choices? Whether it’s cell phone, or maybe something else? That’s a distraction?

Speaker 3 11:41
Yep. And I fail in making that conscious choice about every single day. There’s some days I’ll catch myself, and I’ll just leave it in my bedroom. And I’ll go check it every once in a while, right?

Adam Salgat 11:51
Yeah, to be fair, when I say I do that, it’s not every day. I’m not trying to paint some perfect picture. I just on occasion.

Speaker 3 11:59
Yeah, and there are times that I get caught up in into my phones there. And hey, I went to school for something a good deal to buy or something like that, right? Or

Adam Salgat 12:11
another Land Rover? Another Land Cruiser? Yeah. Or land Land Cruiser? Yeah.

Speaker 4 12:16
We did. Adam, it’s, it is a conscious choice that we the other day, because things had gotten so busy, we just took the girls to a campsite overnight where there was no Wi Fi. So sometimes it’s even just removing the temptation out of the equation. And it’s always amazing to us how much more focused attention we give, when we don’t have all those home distractions around.

Adam Salgat 12:35
It’s a really great idea. Yeah, just taking them out, to do the space that allows you to do things together, and not have to worry about you know, what might need to be done at home, even whether it’s electronic related, but maybe it’s laundry, laundry related or the To Do lists on the garage, like the fence in the backyard that needs to be stained, all that kind of stuff. No, that’s really great advice. Is there anything else when it comes to the skills working with, with your kids directly that you’d want to mention or just bring up for people to think about as as they listen here to, to our musings of everything. I will

Speaker 4 13:09
say one of the things that especially with our 12 year old that’s been really empowering in my mind is walking them through the three moves and how to have that effective confrontation, we have a few remember, Adam, when we talk about those three options, right? When you are really bothered or bugged by something, you can make the choice to adjust the circumstances, you might decide that you actually are okay with it and can accept it. Or you can learn how to affect effectively confront someone. And with our oldest daughter, she came to us one day with a really big issue of with a friend at school. And we kind of reflectively listened and empathize. And then the next week, she came to us again. And that’s when we said hey, it might be cool for you to see this tool. Because what we’re trying to teach her and still is this idea that you do have choices in those moments when you’re bothered, right. So one, it’s the empowerment of how are we teaching them to communicate effectively with people around them. But it also in my mind, steers them away from the alternative, which is calling six other friends that they can get to agree with them or continuing to complain about the situation without really having any intention of making a change. And so we’re kind of just getting into that a little bit with her age group. But it’s been really awesome to see how she and her friends are starting to use those skills together. And I feel like that’s been really powerful tool. Can we just pick all of them, Adam? Like I keep saying, Oh, this is a really good one too.

Adam Salgat 14:27
Well, you mentioned power of choice. And that’s like one of my favorite absolute favorite concepts in life just in general. And I’m already mentioning that to my five year old so now you’re making me wonder if I’m going way too early, but but it’s just to me it’s the idea of like well you you can choose when she’s pouting, for example, about something where you unfortunately, you don’t get to continue watching TV or something like that. Like that’s not an option so you have a choice of you can continue to pow or you can choose to come outside and have fun. Now that’s up to you how you want to spend your time, it’s fine by me, I’m not gonna yell at you about whatever choice you want to do. But I, I use the word choice a lot with her, because I think there’s a lot of power in realizing that you have control over things. If you collect yourself, especially when they’re young, and it’s a lot of emotion, right, like, the two year old, um, I did that a little bit with, you know, mistakes that she was making? Just, you know, was that a good choice or a bad choice, but I’m not really expecting her to have correct answers always like just throwing it out there. But what about when you two are co parenting? What kind of skills do you utilize between the two of you, you know, to balance it out and to work together? What kind of skills come up often, obviously, Jonathan, you kind of mentioned in our pre meeting empathy. So if you want to touch on that right away, I think that’s obviously a great space to start, as it covers a lot. But once you start there,

Speaker 3 15:57
sure, I think, as with our children, that’s probably been the biggest learning moment and tool for me to utilize. It also has been with Kate, we both travel quite a bit, are away from home quite a bit. And it’s very easy. When you’re away and you’re talking on the phone and a situation arises, and they handle it maybe in a way that you don’t think they should handle it, or you would have handled it very differently, or something’s not getting done that you think should be getting done or whatever the circumstance that it’s, it’s a very good reminder, to remember that I don’t necessarily know what’s going on there. I don’t have all the details. And also knowing that Kate has our best interest and the girl’s best interests at heart. So she’s making the choices to the best of her ability in that moment, whatever is going on, right? And just understanding that she is where she is. And she’s doing the best she can without judging her or telling her that he should be doing something different or anything like that, just letting it go. Right.

Adam Salgat 17:03
It can be really easy sometimes to hear the situations, especially from afar, right? And kind of say, Well, did you think about doing it this way? Or think about? Did you think about that? Or when you’re not in the moment? It’s definitely it’s like armchair quarterback quarterbacking. Right? So we it’s, it’s an easy thing to do. We try to shy away from it. And remembering the empathy portion that you just mentioned, I think, is a great way to do that.

Speaker 3 17:29
Why did you do this? Why didn’t you do that? Try? Not helpful.

Adam Salgat 17:37
Not always the best. Katie, what about you,

Speaker 4 17:40
I feel like this is going to be a piece that can stem in a few different directions. But we talk a lot about in our different content pieces. Coming back to this reminder that every behavior is an expression of a need. And parenting is the same way when your partner is parenting in the moment, it is coming from a certain need or value that they have. And so I think one of the things that’s been really helpful for me is that instead of having conversations around the outward parenting decision, right, like we might not agree on this parenting decision, or we might have handled it differently, to have dialogue around why something is really important to your partner, or what it means to them or what they hope for, for the kids, because of what they’ve identified as something that’s important. I think that’s been really eye opening for me. We had a great example, the other day, I was walking into the house. And I heard Jonathan talking to the two girls and correct me if I didn’t get the quote quite right. But Jonathan said something to them about my role as a parent, is to give you boundaries. And your role as the kid is to negotiate those boundaries. Now, for me, who tends to err more on the side of if I tell you to do something, you should do that. We had this right, we’re in the moment. Now we’re in the moment where a statement was made in front of the girls where we’re all there. And we have choices as parents, we have choices of how we want to handle that dialogue. So I could have jumped into the middle of that and said, Oh, no, that is not how we do things in this house. Or we could have had an argument about it. Or I could have made a little comment to the girls when he’s not around whatever, you know, you see some of that stuff start to crop up. But instead, what I’ve got to be able to realize is Jonathan’s behavioral profile when we went through the class and really got a chance to look at that. Like he has this deep value for people who kind of push boundaries, who challenge things who think for themselves. So, you know, they’re not just following along because it’s what people tell them to do. And it’s one of the things that I’ve always loved about him and appreciated about him. So sometimes for me, it’s like stepping back to recognize when your partner makes a parenting decision, or they say something about parenting, to first really look at where is this coming from and why is it important? And I think that really changes how we talk about things.

Adam Salgat 19:50
And it gives you the opportunity if you can keep that emotion bubble smaller in that moment. gives you the opportunity to talk to him about it later. and say why you might feel differently about that type of statement for for a parenting decision, right? As opposed to, obviously potentially causing a fight in front of the kids or an argument or a disagreement, whatever, you know, whatever level it might reach, I suppose fight always sounds so much worse than just a disagreement, but and it also helps you guys stay relatively unified in front of the kids right now, they don’t have much of a question about things if they’re, if you’re not questioning him in front of them, as I know, I do it in front of my wife, I know she doesn’t in front of me or in front of the kids, like we do it to each other. But we also will, after the kids go to bed, have that conversation. Sounds like this was that kind of opportunity for you to if you felt like you need to do have that conversation with him about his choice of how he, you know, chose to break that down for the kids.

Speaker 4 20:55
You know, Adam, I will say though, I think sometimes, for me, that term, even unified front can mean different things to different people. And I think for me for a long time, I assumed that that meant, we had to agree on how each other parented that like we would handle situations the same way. And it was really eye opening for me to be on a webinar with Mickey Gibbs, she did one of the parenting roundtable sessions. And I remember her saying, You don’t need to be parenting the same as your partner, you just need to be consistent yourself, for the kids. So this idea of the kids know that when they’re around, Jonathan, he enjoys that back and forth negotiation, encouraging them to kind of critically think and to step back. And the kids know that when they’re with me, my default is going to be, hey, I need you to do this now. And we can talk about it at a different time. And kids navigate that they’re used to different expectations with grandparents and with teachers at school. And so for me, the more important part of the unified front is me modeling for them. How do I interact with Jonathan, when we do disagree about different things, right, can I model for them how to reflectively listen, and to value and appreciate the things that make him different from me? Because that’s, that, to me is a more powerful message.

Adam Salgat 22:05
Jonathan, your thoughts?

Unknown Speaker 22:07
Great. Oh, wholeheartedly?

Adam Salgat 22:10
I mean, I, they can’t see you nodding your head.

Speaker 3 22:15
Yeah. That was kind of eye opening to me as well. Okay. Sure. That that I think there’s so much pressure that parents put on themselves that they need to parent the exact same way. And then there’s a lot of probably tension around, which way are they going to parent the way one partner will thinks they should parent or the way the other partner thinks they should parent and that relieves a lot of tension when you realize you have to parent the same way as your spouse. Right.

Adam Salgat 22:41
Right. And I think that one

Speaker 3 22:42
needs and values and what’s important to me may not be the same thing. It’s important to keep to install the girls. Right?

Adam Salgat 22:48
Right. Yeah. And that, that comes to mind example for, for me and my wife, super important to for her each night to read to the kids. There are nights where I’m like, I’m tapped out and then like, Can we skip 20 minutes of reading because honestly, I just need to, I need to relax somewhere else. And in that case, she’s either handled it kind of on her own, and maybe I play with our two year old and I just kind of play with her instead of like, you know, reading and so we just kind of do something different. Like, I like routine. And I think it’s great for the kids, but sometimes even the routine of it all causes me to kind of like pull back and say my gosh, I don’t want to do this again tonight just go to bed. Right? Like just like when are you gonna brush your teeth on your own? Just go? And then I’m sure what, um, you know, when they’re 13 and 14 and doing all that I’ll regret it at some level. But But I think the communication, do you, when we’re talking about parenting and skills? Do the two of you, either purposefully or just let it happen organically communicate about the kids, you know, your worries, your concerns? And or maybe it’s parenting style, whatever it might be? Like, do you set aside certain time of the week? Or does it just kind of happen organically every few days, or every few weeks even? Or whatever it might be? What any thoughts in that space? As I pry in your personal lives.

Speaker 3 24:18
I think we have a mixture of both of those key we’ll bring up often, you know, every couple days or something, maybe something’s going on with one of the kids or how we should handle something or and then we also plan time to make decisions around what direction we’re going to go with. We actually have a camping trip planned next week to make some family decisions around schooling for next year and things like that. And Kate and I will be alone for the week to discuss all this stuff and figure out which direction want to go. So I think in the moment we’ll do some of that stuff. And then we also do some planning for it.

Speaker 4 24:54
I think I think it’s important to have the discussions intentionally outside of the little moments because, again, Adam, the little moments are, what are we doing about this one issue? And when we can make space space to step back to really figure out what are the most important things for us to instill in our kids? Like, is this really where we should be spending our time and energy? Is there something else we should be looking at changing or aligning? And to, like, hear each other’s voices? And that is really helpful for me. I know that for me, Jonathan tends to be more task oriented first, and I tend to be more people oriented first. So for the longest time, one of his big would you say big issues with what are we teaching the kids was about taking care of their stuff outside, like stuff is in the yard. And for me stuff in the yard didn’t feel like a big deal. Like it wasn’t on my radar. If I did see it, I might not even notice it or pay attention to it. But when we had a chance for me to better understand Jonathan’s perspective of teaching a child responsibility and how to care for the things that are provided to you, like hearing him talk about the why made it much easier for me to be like, Oh, this is an intentional choice for me to try to parent differently than what I might do naturally, if that makes sense.

Adam Salgat 26:05
Absolutely does. And it’s good that two of you, you know, explain those things to each other, you talk about them, as opposed to, you know, the complete opposite of that, if you were to never speak about it, and then you know, I’ll one day, you know, he’s he’s telling the kids to take care of stuff or asking them to take care of stuff. And you’re just like, why does this stuff matter to you so much, I mean, you can go to write down that like a typical sitcom type, or, you know, movie script, you know, written dialogue and play it out the other way. And it’s generally not healthy. Now, in a sitcom, they laugh it off in real life, drama becomes much more than that, you know. So there’s elements here that I think are pretty darn important that the two of you communicate, I think it’s important for parents to communicate often. And so whether it is scheduled time, or just that organic, you know, hey, I noticed this today, or I’m concerned about this behavior today, or anything like that might be with the kids, I think, communicating that. Pretty darn important. One of the elements that you mentioned back in, there was a little bit about acceptance versus agreement. And when I, when you mentioned this, in our pre discussion, the first thing that actually came to mind isn’t necessarily directly related to acceptance versus agreement of, you know, the parent, your co parent, it, what came to mind, and it’s partially because of being on a family vacation last week, acceptance versus agreement of the way other people parent, and I think sometimes, as parents, we look at the way other people parent, and we’re quick to judge, as opposed to maybe thinking about what they’re going through and how certain things are and, and so that acceptance versus agreement, the way that other people parent that this is kind of on the fly, but is there any comments there from what you’ve seen, or what siblings or those that you’re involved with closely, and I’m not looking for examples, because I’m not trying to call anyone out, or anything like that. It’s just, I think that is a good skill to keep in mind as a parent, when you are often around other parents.

Speaker 4 28:11
Yeah. And actually, Adam, I know, you said, you’re not looking for examples. But I know that even just in the past couple of weeks, I can think of two different families that we know and are close with, one of which you had a child that took them forever to have a child and went through a lot of trauma around that. And when they finally had when they are incredibly safety oriented and focused on the child, because this has been something that they’ve wanted for so long, and had experienced loss. And we also know a family who was talking with us about the fact that they went through a trauma as a teen and had to kind of run the household. And so with their child, they are pushing the independence and equipping you to be on your own and the world doesn’t go around you. And neither are right or wrong. But I think even just that reminder of recognizing that everyone around you is functioning out of their own needs and values. And unless you’re really able to take the time to dive into learn their story. I don’t know, I feel like maybe it’s simplified. But I personally feel like my time and energy would be spent better elsewhere then thinking about it.

Adam Salgat 29:13
But I’m nodding my head because I very much agree with that. Because as much as maybe wasn’t a fan of certain decision, whatever decision it might have been. I also know the person I know what they’re going through, I know the struggles that are happening. So it’s, it’s you have to keep those things in mind. It’s identifying with that empathy and, and working with them potentially to maybe help them or alleviate something going on in their life because you know, you can kind of tell that they’re not doing too well. And you know that that’s going to reflect on the kids because, holy moly sometimes it’s hard not to right so So as we wrap up today’s podcast, we often like to finish up with key takeaways, something for the listener to you know, ponder or just kind of keep in mind as they finish listening to us, I’m going to go back to the beginning where I mentioned, in reflective listening, emptying the whiteboard, cleaning off the whiteboard, and just kind of having the space to listen to them. When they’re telling me about whatever they’re telling me about, like under the age of six, it’s normally not super duper exciting. But to be honest, that’s some of the best stuff really, because sometimes it’s very creative. And I’ve noticed when I have a full whiteboard, I’m missing that creativity. And that’s something that inspires me later. So it’s, it’s helpful, but I got to wipe that whiteboard off in order to get to that point to be able to hear him. So what about you, Jonathan, any particular little key takeaway you’d like people to, to think about as we finish up, what’s to come

Speaker 3 30:49
by common thread throughout the podcast, Adam of empathy, and really, the two aspects really just staying out of judgment, which is super easy for us all to do. And really trying to understand where they’re coming from, as we say, in the, in the course to see it as they see it and feel it as they feel it has probably been the biggest help to me, I still fail at it quite often. But I’ll just as my key takeaway, because I think it’s probably the been the most impactful for me.

Adam Salgat 31:20
Awesome, awesome.

Speaker 4 31:21
I will say I feel like for, for what it’s worth, after Jonathan mentioned that feeling it many times, there have been multiple moments where the girls will be talking to me about something and I’ll be like jumping in to say something, and I’ll be done. And then Jonathan will give this brilliant reflective response. I’m like, Man, that’s what I was supposed to do in that moment. So I also think, added to your comment earlier, when you’re talking having a partner that gets that same lingo and can kind of step in when one person is feeling overly stressed or losing sight of that I think is helpful. I will say my key takeaway is around reflective listening, I just continue to be amazed that if I can really hang in there with just reflectively, responding, how many more layers of stories and experiences and thoughts and feelings that kids are willing to share. So that key takeaway of making the time and making the space to really let them share everything that they want

Adam Salgat 32:08
you mentioning that about the layers of story? I’m going to bring something up, even though they’re at the very end here. Have you noticed a difference between your open ended questions? If you say, how, what did you do at school today, as opposed to how was school today or tell me about school today? Because even a five year old going to preschool last year, I noticed the major difference. And just how I asked the question

Speaker 4 32:34
at door openers are huge with kids, because oftentimes, if it’s the directed question you get the guests know, fine. And not a lot of details. But even I will say Adam, even with some of the open doors, we’ve seen phases over the years with our old ex where even the door openers are kind of a moment of stop. And so it’s great to be able to follow up with some of the silence and the nonverbal cues to let them know that you’re not leaving. And then just amazing how much more they really have going on.

Adam Salgat 32:58
Awesome. Well, there’s a little bit extra for you right at the end of the podcast. hope everybody enjoyed. I’d like to thank both of you, Katie and Jonathan, for being on the podcast today. Thank you. Thank you.