Did you take the quick Limit Setting Skill Level Quiz last week? If not, I encourage you to do it now. It will only take a few minutes yet it will be very helpful in understanding the exact words you are using that causes your kids not to cooperate.
Last week I was talking about the importance of teaching your kids Independent Living Skills which will make them more prepared to leave the nest and you will not be worried as much. When it’s challenging to do this, keep in mind how important these skills are for their ENTIRE LIFE.
This means that it’s VERY important for you to learn how to teach them respectfully so they will respond more positively rather than being mad at you and rebelling. Don’t expect them to joyfully do what you want without complaining some. That is to be expected so don’t engage with their negative responses with shaming, criticism, or threats.
Have you started making a list of Independent Living Skills that you want your kids to know, or at least working on, before they leave home?
The two areas of Personal Care and Personal Safety are a bit challenging to teach because your child has an immature brain. Perhaps you could show these items to your 9 and older child and ask which ones they want to work on becoming more skilled at doing.
- Brushes & flosses teeth
- Cares for own clothing
- Exercises for 40 minutes three times a week
- Eats nutritious meals
- Gets adequate sleep
- Wakes themself up in the morning
- Does own laundry
- Knows first aid
- Plays and works safe
- Says “NO” to peers when appropriate like drugs, cheating,
- Says “NO” to physical or sexual abuse
- Knows how to safely use public transportation or drive a car
It’s essential that when you are teaching these skills, you don’t have a judgmental attitude and shame them with words such as, “You should know this.” or “Why do I have to remind you?” or “ How are you ever going to be on your own if you don’t ….?”
Kids will take a while to think of these activities on their own as they are learning them. Making them feel that they are less than what you expect or how they “should be” will hurt their self-esteem and make the learning process more difficult.
It takes patience to teach your children how to care for themselves. Your life may be so busy with work, caring for other children, or your home, that taking the time to teach may feel overwhelming. As soon as possible, shift from being a Director to a Collaborator so your kids are also taking responsibility and you aren’t overwhelmed. To learn more about shifting from a Director to a Collaborator, read this article. Don’t Nag Your Kids! Collaborate Instead
Copyright 2022 – Cynthia Klein, Family Happiness Expert – Coach, speaker, and author of Ally Parenting: A Non-Adversarial Approach to Transform Conflict Into Cooperation. Learn more about Cynthia’s services and contact her at her website, https://bridges2understanding.com. Contact Cynthia for permission to reproduce any information from this article.