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A while back, I wrote a post about the 5 times that your child needs more one on one time.   Today, I want to tell you what NOT to do during those one-on-one times.

It can be hard for us to follow the child’s lead… to let them lead us in play and in one on one time, but it is important.  You are doing this for them… to fill up their ‘love tank’.   Some of these may be hard, but they are important.
A girl holding a pink My Little Pony.
  1. Don’t multitask.  Stop looking at your phone, checking the mail or looking at your notebook.  Don’t carry laundry into the laundry room while your child is talking to you.    Don’t talk about things that aren’t related to what you are doing (example: during a dress-up session, don’t say “Ugh.  I wish the doctor would call me.  I am waiting to hear back about an appointment.  I’m so frustrated by it.”)   Remember- those things can wait.  Your child’s years as a child won’t wait.
  1. Don’t preach.     While I am all for teaching lessons, there is a time and a place for them.   Don’t try to talk about why she should be putting a blue dress on Elsa and not a purple one.  Let their imagination be your guide, too.
  2. Don’t take one on one time away.  If your day is planned and your child is prepared, don’t take it away as a punishment.   Your child needs you now more than ever.  Your time should never be a reward or punishment – it should be a given.
  3. Don’t rush through it.   If you find yourself looking at the clock, set it for 20 minutes and play until the timer goes off.   Say to your child “I have to set my timer to remind me to start the laundry, or I will get so caught up in playing with you that hours will go by and I won’t even realize it!”
  4. Don’t call people during your time with your child.  Put your child first.  Talk to your child.
Remember, these moments won’t last long, but right now you are building a foundation for a future relationship.  You are creating a bond that won’t be broken.  We only have a few years to really be present in their lives.   Let’s spend these years wisely.

ps- I want to invite you to sign up for my FREE e-mail series called One on One time.   It is completely free & I will send you this calendar to get you started. 🙂 

A close up of a calendar on a white background.

More posts you might like:

one on one time

make each child feel important

mom, look at me in my eyes

Hi there!

I’m Becky, a former elementary school teacher turned certified child development therapist and blogger. I work at home with my husband and together we are raising (and partially homeschooling) our four children in the Carolinas. I love diet coke, ice cream, and spending time with my family.

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  1. I’ve been reading a lot of articles about spending one on one time with your child each day. I was wondering if you have any suggestions about how to do that when there are two and much of the time because of schedules I am the only parent home. Thanks so much!