7 Steps to Empty-Nesting Success (Part 2)

In last week’s blog, I covered the first 3 (of 7) steps to successfully navigate your empty-nesting transition with your daughter.

Those steps are:

  1. Finances Need To Be Fixed
  2. Responsibilities Need To Be Rounded Up
  3. Expectations Need To Be Equitable

In this week’s blog, I’ll cover the next 4 steps for successfully navigating the empty-nesting process with your daughter. 


Checklist Item #4:

Engage In Your Engagements


Even though your daughter is an “emerging adult” whom you’re encouraging to do “adult(ing)” things, she’s still your “baby.” And I know you desire to spend time with her.


Even though she’s likely been back home but in “her own world,” it can be easy to take the time you spend with her for granted. Don’t fall into that trap.




Well, because even though she is growing up and may be spending more time with other friends, she still desires some connection – engagement – with you.

So, be engaged in your engagement with her. By that I mean, don’t divide your attentions when you are spending time with her either engaged in an activity or are just in the same room. Something as simple as a direct eye-to-eye smiling gaze will go a long way in letting her know that she can still gain access to your attention.


If you have more than one daughter/child, do know that each child is different and has different needs/desires/interests in this area of engagement. Simply find a moment to ask her how she’d like or prefer to be engaged. For example, you could ask: “What kind(s) of activities would be of interest to you that we could do together? I’d like to spend some time with you.”

Checklist Item #5:

Discuss Dates

As your daughter’s life begins and continues to broaden to include activities and interests that may be beyond your routine, dates become important.


No, not her “dating” scene – lol lol.


I mean dates – times on the calendar of her life – that are significant to her.


Sometimes those dates/events/times on her calendar are expressly communicated. (“Mom, I have X event coming up on X date.”). Sometimes they may not be as clearly communicated. (“Yeah, some friends are getting together for a watch party.”).


In the former scenario, your remembering the actual date would be a good idea. In the latter scenario, your remembering the mention of an activity (with no date) is equally as important.




Because your mentioning them later to your daughter will signal to her that you have taken in an aspect of her life without getting “all up in (her) business.” This will indicate to her a level of respect you’re giving her. Additionally, it will serve as a foundation for further connection points in your mother-daughter relationship.

Checklist Item #6:

Orate Only Once

At the time that I am writing this blog, my youngest daughter Jasmine is looking over my shoulder and inquiring about its content. She asked about this “Orate only once” phrase and quipped, “Why can’t you just say, ‘Say it only once?’” I told her that I was spelling out an acronym and needed an “O”-word.

She and I both laughed.

Then I added, “I want Moms to know that they need to only say things once to their adulting daughters. What do you think?”


With a big smile, she quickly nodded her head.


So, there you have it. Item #6 is daughter-approved!


It can be tempting for a mom to feel the need to repeat herself often (a.k.a. “nag”) regarding things her daughter needs to address. Believe me, I’ve been there (& still get to that point at times). But my daughters are quick to remind me that they did hear me.


So, what’s a Mom to do?


Pace yourself . . . and wait patiently.


Then do item # 7.

Checklist Item #7:

Make A Note . . .Twice

While you are “waiting” for your daughter to “hear” (a.k.a. “do”) what you’d told her to—I mean, suggested that she—do, you may need to make a note.


What I mean is: you want to note first . . .

  • That you told her whatever it is you told her
  • That she heard you

Then, you want to note second. . .

  • That she likely would not like to have you nag her about it.
  • That, having realized that you don’t want to nag her, you have decided (again) to not nag her.

This process can be hard, annoying, and taxing on your patience. You may even become a “saint” in the process. But, for the goal of developing closeness in your mother-daughter relationship as you’re empty-nesting, it is vital.


In Summary, the 7 steps to cover for successfully navigating the empty-nesting transition with your daughter are that:

  1. Finances Need To Be Fixed
  2. Responsibilities Need To Be Rounded Up
  3. Expectations Need To Be Equitable
  4. Engage In Your Engagements
  5. Discuss Dates
  6. Orate Only Once
  7. Make A Note Twice

Overall, these 7 Empty-Nesting checklist items will put some real power in your corner as a mom. But don’t forget, there’s a lot more to Empty-Nesting success, especially if you want to get stay close with your daughter. So don’t let this blog be the end of your journey, but rather the beginning of your quest for more knowledge.


By the way, I just released a New Free PDF on how to stay close with your daughter!


It’s called “How To Advance The Ball” in your mother-daughter relationship” and

you can grab it {FREE} here:



© Dr. Michelle Deering  | All rights reserved.


There is no comment on this post. Be the first one.

Leave a comment