It’s amazing how quickly children learn the word “No.” At least, they learn how to say it, even if they have a little trouble understanding it. It seems like they can say no to just about anything, without you even having to prompt them.
Obviously, this isn’t something we want in them. So, we as parents need to break the habit of them always saying “no” when we tell them to do something. How? Simply by not accepting “no” as a response.
Let’s take the chore of picking up toys as an example. No child likes to pick up their toys, they think the world looks right when their toys are scattered all over the place. While we might be tempted to let them get away with that once in a while, we really can’t live like that. We need to train them to put their toys away when we tell them to.
Okay, so what should we do when they don’t obey? Aha, this is where it starts getting interesting. Let’s make a definition here; stating that putting toys away is part of taking care of them. Nobody deserves to have things that they can’t take care of. So, if our children can’t take care of their things, we need to “help them” by removing some of the things. That way, we make the job easier for them.
If you are going to do this, always pick something they really like to take away. Not the teddy bear that they cuddle up with at night, but some toy that they play with all the time. Make sure that your children see you take those things away, and explain to them that you are helping them, by making it easier for them to take care of what they have. Now they have less to have to take care of.
If that toy is really important to the child, they’ll quickly learn how to put their things away. Don’t give it back to them too quick though. You want to be sure they’ve learned how to take care of their things.