Yesterday we started to get into the guts of helpfulness. Honest instructions that work for actual people. Just like any good article on the web, we make it sound so easy – online. But the reality is that reigning back the emotion is something that I personally will have to work on for the rest of my life. Now, I can see the future, and addressing the #1 thing going through your head is that we need to all be robots. False. There is still a lot of love and discipline – it’s just that not every moment needs to be a battle. If there’s something that you won’t back down on – and that’s key – pick your battles – then it’s non-negotiable. If hitting siblings – or even you – is unacceptable then it is what it is – and that doesn’t warrant the parent yelling – because that lesson can get through another way – in the punishment of timeout – not the punishment of yelling. So that’s a recap of yesterday – again you know it’s right because it’s easy to say and hard to do.
There was actually a second piece of magic – 3 more words – that fell in a close second place to the ‘leave out the emotion’ rant from yesterday. So part B – something that totally works.
three words. --- Give them Choices. -- - My kid takes his sweet time getting dressed in the morning and I typically find myself raising my voice to him. But what I try to do is to give him choices. Leave out the emotion and say, ‘The car leaves in 10 minutes, and you’ll either be getting in it in your pajamas or in your school clothes. The choice is yours.’ We leave out the emotion, they make the choices. And in the end – they realize cooperating is easier than fighting it.
Now there’s a whole part C/D/E/F on following through and practicing this too (Which we won’t really be doing – we’ll be moving on in tomorrow’s episode), but that’s the basics. Easy to say, hard to do.
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