a special feature from Bonnie Compton, Parent Coach & Child /Adolescent Therapist*
“We don’t stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing.” George Bernard Shaw
Have you ever watched children at play? Witnessed their joy and freedom as they interact in their playful way? We could all learn from kids…their liveliness and ability to ‘be’ in the present moment.
Kids also love when we join them in their creative imaginative world…a world where there are no boundaries or limitations. Where superheroes fly and fairies magically appear!
Most of us have busy lives, filled with deadlines and “to do” lists. Yet, we know that time is precious, especially time spent with our children and grandchildren. How often do we tell children, “I’m busy” or “I can’t play right now but I’ll play later.” How often do we lose track of time and our promises to children? Perhaps the next time your child or grandchild asks you to play, you will remind yourself of the importance of play.
Here are a few gifts that play offers…
• Play offers a way to bond with children
• It allows you to see your grandchildren’s world through their eyes
• Your time with the children sends a message to them that they matter…that you treasure your time with them
• It reduces stress levels, both for you and your grandkids
• Play encourages imagination and creativity
• It helps build communication and social connection
Have you forgotten how to play? Here are some tips to get you started…
• Begin by sharing with your grandchildren that you love spending time with them
• Ask the kids what they would like to play
• Follow their lead and drop your need to control the activity
• Reframe your thoughts and judgments about the way they play the game, the rules they change, or their need to win
Be creative, tap into your own childlike nature and HAVE FUN!
*Bonnie Compton is a Parent Coach, as well as a Child and Adolescent Therapist who specializes in both parenting and behavioral issues. She has over 25 years experience working with children and parents helping them connect and deepen their relationship with each other. Bonnie is also a Mom of four children and a Grandmother. She is a ScreamFree certified leader and host of Wholehearted Parenting Radio. As a Parent Coach, Bonnie helps parents learn about the calm and connected path to parenting. Bonnie believes there is a different way, a better way to parent. You may contact Bonnie at firstname.lastname@example.org 843-718-1551