How to Get Your Child to Listen to Your Requests: Tips from a Former Teacher
As a virtual assistant, one of the most common problems I have heard from parents is their struggle in making their children listen to their requests. It’s a challenge that many parents face, and it can be frustrating and stressful. However, there are two things that can help resolve this issue: building healthy respect between parent and child and making requests at the right time.
Building Healthy Respect
It’s not enough to have your child love you; you need them to respect you, too. Even if they don’t always like you, respect will ensure that they listen to your requests. So how do you earn your child’s respect?
1. Be consistent with discipline: Use a simple, consistent form of discipline. Whether it’s a time-out or a loss of privileges, a clear and consistent disciplinary action can help your child understand your expectations and learn to respect them.
2. Build a strong bond with your child: It’s important to spend special moments together as a family and one-on-one time with each child. The more quality time you spend with your child, the stronger your bond will be.
3. Give specific and non-verbal praise: Recognize and praise your child for their positive behavior through specific and non-verbal means such as a smile or a pat on the back. Specific praise is crucial, and be sure to let them know you appreciate their efforts.
By consistently practicing these three things, you can foster a strong and healthy relationship with your child that will encourage them to listen to your requests.
Timing Your Requests
One of the biggest mistakes parents make is making requests at the wrong time. Being considerate of your child’s schedule and routine can go a long way in getting your child to listen.
Here are three tips for making requests at the right time:
1. Give a countdown: Giving a countdown can help prepare your child for the upcoming request. For example, “Sally, in 5 minutes it’s time to eat dinner.” Then, gently count down so that they are prepared for the request.
2. Make requests between TV programs: If your child is watching TV, it’s better to make your request between programs or during a commercial break. If possible, pause the program or movie, so you have their undivided attention.
3. Use praise or thank you’s: Always acknowledge your child when they have listened to your request. Use praise and thank you’s to show your appreciation, such as “Thanks for coming so quickly after your program was finished, I appreciate that.” Solidify the compliment with a quick smile, back rub, thumbs up, or squeeze of the hand.
As parents, we all want our children to listen to our requests. Building healthy respect and being mindful of the timing of our requests can make a big difference in how willing our children are to listen. By consistently practicing these strategies, you can strengthen your bond with your child, and enjoy a more joyful and stress-free parenting experience.