I’m not taking the sudden onset of an empty nest very well. It’s heinous and I hate it.
I raised my children in a home with constant activity, constant flow of children in and out and, yes, a bit of chaos. I like it that way. We’re comfortable with it.
It’s a much quieter home these days and it’s been a particularly difficult transition for me.
I think I finally figured out why.
Have you ever read any of Gary Chapman’s books related to love languages? They are fascinating, incredible reads that help you understand there are five basic ways people feel loved. I purchased the teen version a few years ago called “The Five Love Languages of Teenagers: The Secret to Loving Teens Effectively.”
It’s incredibly valuable and the results of the book’s survey told us that all three of us – my son, my daughter and myself – each have A DIFFERENT LOVE LANGUAGE that makes us each feel accepted and loved within our family.
My daughter is touch, my son is verbal affirmations and mine? Time spent together. OF COURSE. The very antithesis of teens leaving the nest and becoming independent.
It explains a lot.
Anyway… clients have love languages, too. Not so much LOVE with a capital “L” love – but how they are comfortable in terms of communication styles. What makes them value you and feel you “get them.” It might be a specific kind of reporting, email updates, phone calls, text, regular happy hours… different clients need to communicate in different ways.
Not only that, but communicating to them in the WRONG way impacts retention. They aren’t happy.
Have you talked to them about their preferences? If not, maybe it’s time to figure it out and give ’em a little love.
What is the “snack on this” column? Short, fast reads that are a little more introspective, a little more personal and a little less educational.