Ever watched the show Undercover Boss? It’s were a high level executive in a company disguises him or herself as a new trainee in the company to evaluate how the company is going and what changes need to be made. What if you became the undercover parent in order to learn what your kids need from you?
One of the things I love about that show is that the boss gets information straight from his employees to help make the company better. The boss sees areas that need improvement and takes action to make changes.
How can you become an undercover parent?
Sometimes I get the job of doing undercover work for parents when their kids are working with me. When working with teens, I ask what she needs differently from her parents and usually get the unedited version of what needs improving. I help her understand why she needs it, why she thinks her parents aren’t doing it, and how to communicate this need to them.
Then we often talk through the unmet need with the parents together. This is where I tend see things struggle. Many parents get defensive when I disclose the findings of my undercover work. They don’t want to own that they need to make changes too. They think their child is the only one that needs to make adjustments.
I know it’s hard to hear you aren’t a perfect parent, but isn’t it great that your kids are sharing what they need in a healthy way? We all have work to do in the parenting department, and who better to give us feedback than our kids!
I become the undercover parent with my kids every few months. I pick a quiet moment when we are close to ask, “Is there anything I can change to be a better mommy to you?” As I wait for their answer, I prepare myself for their response then process the information they share. These moments are usually really special times where my kids know they can be open and that it’s safe to share. If you need some help talking to your kids, here are some helpful communication tips on parenting.
So it’s time to go undercover and find out the changes you need to make in your family. Allow your kids to have a voice and teach you what they need. Listen to them and work to make change.
Is it hard for you to hear about areas you need to improve on as a parent? If so, why?