Like most parents, you probably want to be able to set your own rules and control your own home. You’re the boss, so it shouldn’t be a problem, right? Unfortunately, kids don’t always agree with this philosophy and like to do what they want, when they want to do it. So instead of getting mad and yelling at them, try these five ways to get your kids to listen without yelling.
1) Acknowledge their feelings
Sometimes kids have a hard time hearing what we’re saying because they are too busy feeling frustrated, angry, or hurt. It’s important that they know you understand their feelings before trying to get them to listen. Empathize with your child and let them talk about how they feel until they calm down. Try something like, You seem really mad right now. Once your child has calmed down, talk about why you want them to do the task and reassure them that everything will be okay.
2) Use positive reinforcement
- Reward your child for good behavior. When they do something you want them to, give them a small reward such as a sticker or a piece of candy. It might seem like such a small thing, but it will make all the difference in your relationship with your kids. Rewarding children for following directions will help them understand that when they do what you ask, they are being rewarded and can feel proud of themselves!
3) Avoid negative punishment
Negative punishment includes yelling, spanking, shaming, and time-out. Instead of using these methods for disciplining your children, try some of the following:
1) Say no before you give a consequence so that they can understand what they did wrong
2) State what they did wrong and how it made you feel
3) Model positive behavior by taking on the role of a coach who helps them learn from their mistakes 4) Avoid rewarding bad behavior with attention or food
4) Establish a routine and stick with it
- Establish a set routine for your children and stick with it.
- Use distraction as a way of refocusing their attention on what you are trying to communicate.
- Teach them age-appropriate skills that will help them in the future, and make sure they do not get distracted by technology or other things around them.
5) Talk after discipline, don’t correct during
- Be prepared for discipline before it happens. Don’t just react when your child is being disobedient. Instead, give them a warning and let them know what the consequence will be if they don’t listen. For example, If you don’t take a bath tonight, you will have to go to bed without dinner.
- When your child is being defiant or misbehaving, use words instead of actions for discipline.