Pattie’s Parenting Tip – Perspective

Authored by Pattie Carroll

Perspective taking requires you to put yourself in another person’s position and imagine what you would feel, think, or do if you were in that situation. Perspective taking helps children to be more successful as adults because they are better able to deal with other people. Seeing and understanding the world from someone else’s point of view is an important life skill you can teach children to build healthy and satisfying relationships.

Children with better perspective-taking skills are less likely to be involved in conflicts with other children. It helps them know how to behave in social situations, care for others, communicate effectively, solve problems, and work together. Understanding what others are thinking also helps children feel more comfortable in new situations.

Take time to listen to your child. When you listen and care about their thoughts and feelings, you demonstrate how to care about another person’s point of view. Over time, children learn how to care about another person’s point of view because they have felt it themselves. Here are three things you can do to build perspective-taking skills.

1. model how to look for and listen to another person’s perspective

2. explain your own views and talk about your thoughts and feelings, and

3. talk with your children about the possible feelings and thoughts of someone else.

These are especially tumultuous times. Standing back and trying to understand what someone else is experiencing might just help us all.

Take Care Everyone

All the Best,
Patricia Carroll | UW-Madison, Division of Extension
Associate Professor, Dept of Family Development
Human Development & Relationships Educator, Dodge County
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