The Power of “Let’s”

Nobody likes to take orders, no matter how old they are. But let’s face it – in every family, someone has to be in charge, decide what needs doing, and then dole out the duties. When it comes to how successfully those orders are received though, a lot depends on how they are given.

While children are growing, they work on developing self control and self discipline. It isn’t an instinctual thing and it takes years of effort to grow those skills. In the meantime, watching T.V. or playing outside has way more immediate payoff than, say, doing homework or cleaning up a messy room.

So it’s not too surprising that when you say, “Get your room picked up!” or “Go get dressed,” your small fry might try to put it off – and off — for minutes to hours. Right? And then what do we do? Sometimes we shout. Sometimes we nag. Sometimes we give up. Almost always we resent the lack of jump-to-it-ness that we were hoping for and end up feeling frustrated.

We have another idea that you might like to try. We’ve found that when it comes to giving commands, you get a better result when you employ a little psychology – and that involves invoking the magic of “let’s.”

It’s a technique that is brilliant in it’s simplicity and it works. For real! Don’t believe us? Okay, well, next time, instead of shouting out the order, “Go do your homework!” try “Let’s get you set up for your homework.” Instead of, “Go get in the tub!” try, “Let’s get going on bathtime.”

The word “let’s” changes the command from one that involves your child alone, to one that involves the two of you together.  It doesn’t mean that you are taking on what should be his responsibility, it only suggests that you will be involved. And that can be in a small or large way, depending on his age and level of ability, which is totally appropriate.

It also makes the chore, whatever it is, sound less overwhelming and more fun. Little ones love to CO-operate and are usually quick to take you up on your offer, even if it means they have to stop doing something else they like. That’s just how cool they think YOU are!

When you start to use “let’s,” the focus is on helping them learn how to disengage from one thing and reengage with another; how to be responsible for their own care; and how to participate in household tasks – instead of a battle of wills. And the job gets done with a more willing attitude.

Isn’t that what you were going for to begin with? After a while, new skills are learned and healthy habits locked in. So go on, mamas and give “let’s” a try – you’ll love the results!

 

 

Email This Post Email This Post

Ellen and Rachel are two old friends and “expert” mamas—one a pediatrician and one a family therapist—with fifty years of parenting experience between them.


Warning: Illegal string offset 'echo' in /home/mamasonc/public_html/mama/wp-content/themes/hybrid/library/extensions/custom-field-series.php on line 157

Leave a Reply

Loading

MAMAS ON DEMAND

PARENT COACHING
& CONSULTATION

With One or Both of Us


Go to AskDrMama.com & AskMamaEllen.com for the scoop!

Phone • Internet • Your Home or Group

Watch This!

Learning about mental illness and how to talk about it is key to good parenting and healthy living. Take a look. It's oh, so common!

What You Said

  • VEHICLE DIAGNOSTIC TOOLS: If you are going for most excellent contents like me, just visit this web page every day...
  • Swipe Vault Review: Link exchange iѕ nothing eⅼsᥱ howеveг it is only placcing the other person’s website link...
  • web page: What a data of un-ambiguity and preserveness of precious familiarity regarding unexpected feelings.
  • 33Harrison: I must say it was hard to find your page in google. You write great articles but you should rank your...
  • Lisa jacobs: My daughter was in a car accident and now has a concussion. She is plan to go to Mexico City which is a...
  • sexy dresses: I go to see each day a few sites and sites to read content, except this weblog offers quality based...
  • tap sports baseball 2016 hack: Thanks for finally talking about >Pack it! Lunch Ideas Theyre Sure to Go For...
  • RF: Well my baby had her first two bottom theeth at 10 months old and i tought so far so good and then now at 11...
  • ΠΡΟΓΝΩΣΤΙΚΑ ΟΠΑΠ: It’s remarkable designed for me to have a web page, which is beneficial for my experience....
  • sportsbooktop: Please let me know if you’re looking for a writer for your site. You have some really good posts...

Just so you know

The Mama ButtonThe information provided by MamasOnCall is not intended as a substitute for professional advice, but is for information purposes only. You assume full responsibility for the health and well-being of your family. Talk with your healthcare provider about any questions you may have regarding a medical or psychiatric condition.