Google+ Authentic Parenting: Peaceful Parenting Toolbox: #1: Parent With Enthusiasm

Friday, December 17, 2010

Peaceful Parenting Toolbox: #1: Parent With Enthusiasm

This post is part of a series to help you set up a parental toolbox to gently make your way through the roughest moments.

Ending an activity can pose serious problems for your child. Sometimes, they are simply not on your curfew and seem so immersed in what they are doing that you *know* that ending the activity will result in conflict.

And here is where the biggest problem arises. In *knowing* your child’s reaction to your request of moving to other activities will be negative, you approach your child with dread. The child senses your mixed emotions, your hesitations, and *feels* that what is to come is less fun then what they are doing now. So logically, they will react negatively to your request.

This negative spiral is easily broken if you change your mind about the way you perceive what’s coming next.

Instead of asking your child to ‘stop playing’, see the next activity as continued play, maybe in another location or at a different game. For children, life is play, so if you were to approach the crossover to other activities with the same activities, they will gladly follow.
kreg.steppe on Flickr

Here are some examples of enthusiastic crossovers:
Instead of saying: “Can you please stop playing, you need to take a shower.” Say: “Let’s continue the game in the shower, you can bring your toy cars and we can wash them too.”
Instead of: ”It’s time to go, can you put away your game.”, say: “Go pick out a doll and we’ll play ‘camping trip’ in the car. Be sure to make dolly’s backpack!”

If your change your mindset about what *needs* to be done into what you *want* to do, you can easily convey your enthusiasm to your child, and they will be much happier to go along than when you are dreading the event and your reaction to it.
Be silly, Life is fun!

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  1. Hey, I'm catching up on your December posts (busy preparing the Holidays, you know, sewing and sewing... and then being on holiday).
    I love this post. I'm always trying to do that. The key is to allow for some extra time !
    I get stuck in the bad spiral if I am in a hurry and toddler is not ready to change of activities (usually in a hurry because of a doctor appointment or getting preschooler from kindergarten). If I have plenty of time, I find ways to make everybody happy !

  2. Yep, toddlers sure are on a different time schedule than we are


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