How do I get my child to (fill in the blank)?
These types of questions are some of the most common questions I hear from parents. We can’t get someone else to do anything they don’t want to do. I know that feels like a frustrating and even hopeless response.
Instead of asking how do I…, maybe we need to ask a different or better question. When the question we ask doesn’t have a good answer, that may tell us we need to replace it with a better question.
Maybe we need to ask, what is going on for my kid that they can’t stop yelling? Another better question might be, what skills does my child lack that they aren’t putting away their toys?
Maybe an even better question is what is going on with me when they keep doing that behavior. What does that bring up for me, and how can I change what I do so I can show up differently and provide the space my child needs to change?
Or lastly, is my child developmentally ready to do what I am asking them to do? Curiosity can be your best friend when you struggle to figure out how to help your child change their behavior.