Many parents say their children do not listen to them. Often this is because their children do not accept when parents say “No”. How do we get children to accept “No” from us?
Ensure the child is looking at you
When you want to say “NO”, do not say it from a distance or in a matter of fact manner. Call your child and ensure they are looking at you. If they do not come near you, approach them and look at them when you say NO.
Use a firm and different tone
When you deliver the message of NO, use a firm tone that says clearly you mean it. If you say it in the same voice you use for anything else your child may not give it the attention your response needs. You do not have to shout at the child or indicate you are angry. You have to use a tone that says you mean what you are saying and that you will not change your mind. Be firm.
Do not give in
Children will keep resisting doing anything other than what they want. They will whine. They will cry. They will yell. But through it all, make sure that you do not give up. Children understand us very well also. They will try to wear us down. If you say “I can’t take this any more” and say “OK, do whatever you want”, children will learn that you can be beaten down. If they see this happen often, they will just keep whining till you give up or till you snap and punish them.
Don’t be afraid to accept you were wrong to say NO
Sometimes, children may make an argument that sounds convincing. For example, if you ask them to do some work in the house, they may give you a list of all the things they did since the morning. If you feel their claim is fair, then change your mind. This will teach them that you are fair minded.
Do not get angry or spank them
It is important that you not get angry or spank children when they do not accept NO. Here are some tips on how to keep your patience when interacting with children. This is very important. While we want our children to accept NO, we do not want them to do it merely out of fear.
A healthy skepticism is always good
Remember, we want our children to be brave and to stand up and say No when they see something unacceptable. We want them to question authority also and not just accept everything that anyone says emphatically. So while you may feel now that your child should listen to everything you say, remember that some inclination to question authority will serve your child well in the future also.