becoming a “yes” mom

It has been forever since I wrote.  Forever being 2-3 weeks.  That’s a long time for me.  I love to write when I have time, and I love taking pictures.

Neither have I had time for, or I guess, chosen to have time for in the last few weeks.  Hubby has been gone to Israel, so that means I keep myself busy with projects and taking care of kids and trying not to go crazy.

And I’ve found myself saying “No” to our daughter a lot these few weeks.
“No, don’t hit your brother…  No, don’t lay on your brother.  Don’t shut the door in his face.  Don’t get in the drawer in my nightstand and pull stuff out.  Don’t grab things out of your brother’s hand.  Don’t pull the vacuum cord out of the wall while I’m vacuuming.  Don’t splash water out of the tub. Don’t get your dirty shoes on the newly cleaned carpet. Don’t…”

I don’t like it.
1. Because I don’t like the phase of life of having to correct teach all the time.  But more…
2. Because I don’t like that every sentence she is hearing starts with “Don’t” or “No.”

It’s hard!  It’s been harder this week since I’m parenting alone… I’ve found that I get more controlling because I’m trying to keep some order in the house. 🙂  Anyway, I’m discovering that I want to change my verbiage… I want the words that come out of my mouth to be positive, even if they’re words of correction or teaching.  (especially if…)

“Let’s think of a better way to get to play with the toys you want.  Can you ask baby brother if he could share?”  (“Don’t be grabby!  Don’t take stuff from him!”)
“Can you help me by putting the books back on the shelf when you’re done?” (“Don’t throw books all over the floor!”)

My husband and I learned this lesson 5 years ago with our dog, Cinco.  You can’t just tell a dog, “Don’t chew on my shoes.”  You have to replace your shoes with the proper thing to chew on… a bone.  Same with kids.

Instead of saying, “No, don’t…” I want to learn to say, “Let’s do this instead.”

I don’t want her to constantly hear that what she’s doing is wrong.  I want her to hear what she should be doing, and to hear that I’m alongside her for all of it.

Any of you have tricks for this?  How do you remember to re-word how you speak to your kids?  What are good key phrases for those “no” moments?


One thought on “becoming a “yes” mom

  1. I know what you mean, I found myself doing this a lot this weekend with Caroline. It is annoying when I hear it coming out of my mouth! Generally I try and redirect… “how about doing this instead…” or… like when she is opening all the lower cabinets she is not supposed to be in I remind her of what she should be doing… “Caroline, you know you are allowed to play in the Tupperware cabinet… close this one and go there instead”. One thing we we taught when I was in teacher training was to try and always word things in a positive way… instead of “Don’t chew gum” we would say our classroom was gum free… focus on what you WANT them to do instead of what you do not want them to do. It is SO hard sometimes but the results are usually good!

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