Monday, August 24, 2015

Yes ... When - words that can change family dynamics

Parenting, not a job for the faint of heart - or for the proud - your kids will embarrass  that right out of you... fast. That is a promise.

(Don't worry though I'm pretty sure you get to give that gift right back to them during their teenage years, I'm quite looking forward to that!)

So it seems to me we ought to resource each other when we stumble onto something good that works. When The Atlas and I did a toolbox course one of the gems, and there were many, I took away was 'Yes... when'.

It would seem that semantics are in fact important. So instead of sticking the record on 'are you kidding me? Heck no' we change the record to 'of course my darling, when...'

Let me example you up on this.

Child: Mum can we go to the park?

Usual Mama: no we are not going to the park, your room is a mess and I have asked you to tidy it 40 times (mama is not above exaggeration to make a point)

instead we try this -

Child: Mum can we go to the park?

Mama: My darling, I would love to go to the park. Let's do that as soon as you have finished tidying your room. Come and get me as soon as it's done and I'll bring the soccer ball.

Do you see - those subtle little semantics?

Maybe I jest a little with my language, ;o)? But I am serious about it as a strategy. Most of the time there is a way to say yes... when. Instead of no...because. That simple word shift actually makes you feel more positive and your little one feel more like they are going to get what they want.

Of course I can't promise it will induce no whinging. I still whinge when I have to clean my room so somethings are kind of set.

So next time you are faced with

Child: Mum can I dye my hair green and get a minecraft tattoo?

You can say

Mama: Of course you can my darling when you have left home and you are paying all your own bills. At that stage I can only disapprove from afar.

See - yes... when. Try it out, it just might work a charm if you are feeling a little stuck in the 'no because' pattern.

Of course I always call my children darling and I am never less than perfect, despite what my son wrote about me on his descriptive writing activity.

love you more than still being humbled by your children after nine years in the job xxx

I would also like to add I don't actually yell, even if Flip tells the world I do. When we disagreed about this I almost said/yelled, I can show you yelling kid. (But I didn't, because I am very mature.)