If you’re a tuned in parent, you’re aware of how your behavior influences your child. The sneaky thing about body language is that it’s non-verbal and often involuntary, which is why being mindful of it is key.
In her article Parental Body Language and Children, Julie-Ann Amos states, “The body language you use with your children is really integral to your parenting of them. Your non-verbal messages have a powerful influence over a child’s behaviours, attitudes, self-esteem, confidence, and many other aspects of their growth and development.”
OK, I’m just going to say it: kids can be annoying, unbelievably annoying at times. And a few tell-tale signs here and there in your body language that they’re working your nerves is no big deal (solidarity for my fellow work-at-home parents). It’s forming a pattern you want to avoid; for doing it over and over does add up and can negatively impact the kids.
It goes without saying, being mindful of your body language while talking to the kids doesn’t mean firm boundaries and consistent parenting take a back seat. . . . In the words of every parent who ever gave a damn, “Parenting is hard.”
But if you love your kids and you do what’s best for them, I say you’re doing it right.