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Get Your Kids to Listen: A Fresh Approach For Gaining Cooperation

Have you ever found yourself feeling stressed and overwhelmed because your kids just won't listen? Whether you’re asking them to put on their shoes, get their backpack, finish their homework, or do their chores, the outcome is the same: Multiple requests, minimal response, and mounting frustration.


"I have to ask him a thousand times before he’ll listen to me!" Or “It’s almost like he waits for me to blow up! I don’t want to yell, but it’s the only way to get him to do anything!” — these complaints are too familiar.


Can you relate?


Having to repeat ourselves endlessly and losing our cool are definitely not on any parent's wish list. The tricky part is that parenting revolves around getting our kids to cooperate so that we can keep our schedules, stay on task, and arrive at places on time. 


So what can we do? 


Sometimes, the answer is right in front of us.


Stop asking your kiddo to do the same thing over and over again. 


I know. It sounds obvious, but hear me out. 


If I were to ask you, "How many times would you like to ask your kiddo to do something before they do it?" Remembering to keep expectations realistic, what would you say? 

Most parents respond with: "Two or three times would be amazing." So, then I ask, "What keeps you stuck in a vicious cycle of asking over and over again until you lose your cool?"


Many parents are surprised when they stop to really think about it. The answer? It’s become a habit. Our brains are on autopilot.


The good news is that old habits can be broken and new ones developed. When we pause, we can shift our approach and, in turn, help our kids shift theirs.



Breaking the Pattern:


Instead of banging our heads against the wall with endless requests, let's talk about breaking this cycle without feeling like we're constantly nagging or giving a lecture.

It all begins with building awareness. Catch yourself asking for the umpteenth time without any results. Think about what task your kiddo is struggling with, whether it's putting away toys or finishing up homework. Pinpoint the areas of difficulty.


Next, let's talk about setting limits. Instead of getting caught in that loop, set yourself a cap on how many times you're gonna ask. Two times? Three? Whatever feels doable for you.


And then: Consistency. Stick to your limit like glue. It's tough, but trust me, it pays off. Don't give in to the temptation to keep asking—it will sabotage your efforts.


*Additional tip: When seeking your child's attention, consider using a gentle physical check-in. This should not be done in anger but with curiosity. For example, you can lightly touch their arm or shoulder to redirect their attention. This physical connection can help reinforce your verbal instructions and convey that you are present and engaged with them.


Now, let's set everyone up for success by choosing the right moment. Ever noticed how we tend to throw out requests when everyone's knee-deep in something else?


We’ve all been there, right?


Choose a time when everyone's actually listening and able to focus. Pay attention to signs that they're fully focused, ensure they understand your message, and get verbal confirmation that they've understood your request.


Practical Tips for Implementation:


Clear schedules and routines are a lifesaver. Stick to what you both agreed on and save your requests for tasks that fit into your daily activities.


Visual aids work wonders. Think of charts or checklists to help reinforce what needs to get done.


And don't forget to offer support. If your kiddo is struggling to get the task done, offer to do part of the task with him or help her get started. This sends the message that you are a team and want to collaborate, not just make “demands.”


Lastly, celebrate the wins. When you manage to ask fewer times and your kiddo actually listens, pat yourselves on the back. Progress over perfection, always.

I know it sounds counterintuitive to limit the times you ask your child to do something, but it is a powerful tool for changing the tone in the home. 


By breaking the cycle of endless repetition and setting clear boundaries, you create a more respectful and cooperative environment for both you and your child.


You’ll stop losing your cool, and they’ll start doing what you ask; now that’s a win-win!


With love and respect,

Coco


P.S. There’s still time to join our Best Mom Ever Group (only two spots left!) Click here to join our Best Mom Ever Group.  Have questions about the group? Schedule your free call today.

 

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