I address this question all the time. As in every single parenting class.
Hand goes up, someone says: “What if she doesn’t want to clean the sink? How do I GET HER TO clean it?” or “What if he doesn’t make his lunch? How do I GET HIM TO make it?”
My answer is always:
You can do whatever you want to “GET YOUR KID TO” do anything.
You can hit, bribe, yell, cry, whine, threaten, take things away. You can hold your kid’s hands and brush his teeth for him. You can carry her to the car if she’s not ready in time. You can nag until he yields and finishes his homework. It’s up to you. You already know, these are all ways to GET YOUR CHILD TO listen. You also already know- these don’t work (and they’re exhausting) or you wouldn’t be here. These are Bandaids on Bulletwounds. They only temporarily “fix” the problem – but you’re not solving the bigger issue.
Then I wait: Hmmm. The room goes quiet.
Folks, here’s how you GET YOUR KID TO do what you want:
You Stop Asking:
HOW DO I GET MY KID TO
And Start Thinking:
WHAT WILL IT TAKE FOR MY CHILD TO?
Light bulbs go off. Hands go up. Ah-has become clear.
Oh, right, because the goal is NOT to have a child with a clean room or brushed teeth.
The REAL goal is to raise a child who knows how to clean his room and when to brush his teeth. Big difference!
Stay tuned for more as we roll into our NEW blog schedule.
xo – Vicki