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Going diaper free with your baby is not as hard or bizarre as you might think.  In the Western world, we have been programmed to believe that babies need diapers, but in many parts of …

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Home » Books, Obedience Issues, preschooler

7 Ways to Stop Saying “No” and “Don’t”

Submitted by on Monday, 15 March 201012 Comments

I got tired of it.  Always saying, “Don’t do this..” “No!” “Do this..” and “Don’t do that..”  I’m sure Smarty Pants was getting tired of it too.  Imagine always hearing those words from your boss or colleague at work.  If you were me, you’d be out the door fast.

Desperate, I turned to “How to Talk So Kids Will Listen and Listen So Kids Will Talk” for help.  This book is a classic, and I learned why.  The advice is timeless, and it works.

It took a while to get out of the habit of saying “No,” “Do..,” and “Don’t,” and I still do it sometimes when I have knee-jerk reactions, but I’m getting better.

Instead of saying “No,”  “Do..,” and “Don’t,” I make an effort to do as the book teaches, and describe the situation instead. When I describe the situation, Smarty Pants figures out for himself what he needs to do, or what he is expected to do or not do, and he just does it.  It is amazing.

Here are some examples of how I describe the situation now (and how you can too):

1) (after dinner) “Your plate is still on the table”  (he looks at his plate, picks it up, and brings it to the kitchen).

2) “Your nose is running” (grabs a tissue and wipes his nose).

3) “That’s making a big mess on the floor” (stops throwing toys everywhere and picks them up).

4) “Your little sister is crying” (stops pestering his little sister).

5) “Dinner is on the table” (comes to the table and eats).

6) “The juice spilled” (gets a sponge and wipes up the juice).

7) “The ball might break the glass if you throw it on the table” (stops throwing the ball close to the table).

It is a simple concept, and it really works.  The hardest part is getting yourself to change.  Once you do, you’ll be a convert.  This method not only works better, it is a easier on the ears of the child, and easier on the mouth of the parent.  You’ll find you don’t need to shout when you use this approach.

Overall, Smarty Pants is a good kid, so maybe this works better for me than it might work for some, but give it a try and I’m sure in any case you’ll find it works better than shouting and commanding.  If it doesn’t work right away, don’t give up!

What do you think?  Leave a comment and let me know!

For more information, I highly recommend, “How to Talk So Kids Will Listen and Listen So Kids Will Talk.” for help!

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