By Vidisha Patel.
Savor the silence. In working with gifted children I have learned that the spaces between the
words teach me so much more. Focusing on what the children say and how they say it (is saying and how they are saying) helps me better understand their thought process. Rather than trying to find an immediate solution or explanation for the problem at hand, I find that active listening provides clues on underlying worries and concerns that the children may not have noticed. This practice focuses attention back on the child, further validating feelings and boosting self-esteem. The art of listening actively takes thought and practice but is well worth the effort.
Dr. Vidisha Patel is a therapist and works with gifted children and families in Sarasota, Florida. She specializes in helping children and adults with managing their emotions around stress and anxiety as well as relationship challenges. Dr. Patel is a Director on the SENG Board and currently serves as the Finance Officer.