De-Nagnitize Yourself


One of the most challenging tasks moms often face is teaching their children to listen and follow directions. It becomes frustrating for the whole family when you repeatedly give the same directions multiple times. As moms’ we can easily become the nagging machine, which is not only frustrating but exhausting.  As crazy as it sounds, the more you nag the more you are encouraging your child to not pay attention..

The trouble is, we tend to think it is all our children’s doing – “making” us repeat ourselves multiple times in order to get them to comply.  Here is the catch, if we have fallen into that pattern; we have conditioned our children to expect that mom will repeat herself multiple times before she really means what she is saying.  We are the biggest problem in the entire equation.

So instead of continuing the pattern, change your actions – here are some tips to consider to escape the nagging circus. [Read more…]

The Benefits of Nagging


This post originally ran over at Families with Purpose last November.  Nagging is always a hot topic and a pattern that moms can easily fall into.  Perhaps you are at a point to finally break the habit – I hope the article helps you come up with some ideas on how you can do that.

We all do it….. or at least started out our mothering journey nagging and reminding our kids, we figured it was something we had to do.  I know, I did the same thing.  Asking my kids if they brushed their teeth for the third time, reminding them for the fifth time to take out the trash or telling them to buckle their seatbelt.  It all seems to go in one ear and out the other.

So why do we do it?

We know that it doesn’t really solve the issue we are trying to address, but we do it anyway.  We get into patterns of behavior, negative patterns  that seem to be endless.    We have no other idea how to help the situation, so we just continue – even though it is not working.  Why do we continue to do things the same way over and over again hoping that we will get a different result?  I ask this question of the moms I work with a lot, and it stops them dead in their tracks!

I thought I would take a look at what we are enforcing when we nag and remind our kids like we do everyday.  There are benefits of nagging, but I am not sure you will like these benefits.

You teach you child to NOT listen the first time.

Just think about this for a minute……if every morning you remind little Johnny to brush his teeth five times before he actually does it, why on earth should he listen to you the first time?  As Hal Runkel states in his book, “ScreamFree Parenting” – “Think  about what your relationship would be like with your child if they knew for an absolute ironclad fact that you never gave two warnings?  Ever.”  I love this quote, and yes, it is referring here to giving warnings, but you can consider it the same question with regard to nagging and reminding.  Imagine what it would look like if your child knew that you only made a request of them ONE time.  How would that change what happens in your home every morning?

Does she mean it this time?

This goes in conjunction with the previous point, if you will be telling your child multiple times to do something, then how will they know when you really mean it?  If you have conditioned your child to not act until a third or fourth request, what happens when you ask them to do something that is critical for them to act on when you request, like – “Get out of the way,” or “Get out of the street,” or even “Don’t touch the burner.”  All of these are ways you try to protect your child and if they are conditioned to NOT listen to you the first time, you could have a fairly serious situation on your hands.

Perfectly said by Dr. Kevin Lehman

If you want your child to take you seriously, say your words once.  Only  once.  If you say it more than once, you’re implying, “I think you’re so stupid that you’re not going to get it the first time, so let me tell you again.”

How true.

When we choose to repeat ourselves we are reinforcing just the complete opposite of what we are trying to develop.  We all want self-directed children, but if we continually repeat and nag our children they never have the opportunity to develop habits that will take them into adulthood.  When you empower your children by allowing them to complete a task with only one request you will see tremendous pride.  This is where true motivation comes from – I honestly feel we undervalue what our kids can actually accomplish.  We end up holding them back and keeping them from success in many areas because we don’t think they can do it.

No one likes to repeat themselves over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over.   You get the picture.  It is a waste of your time but it certainly could be doing a lot more damage than you really had given thought to.

I challenge you to pick one area this week and choose to not engage in the nagging with your child.  You could even perhaps sit him/them down and give them Dr. Lehman’s quote (As I did one afternoon) and let them know you haven’t been doing them much good always reminding and from now on you would be trying really hard to only say things once.  You will need to be prepared to be consistent and really be in touch with your own emotions.

 Photo Credit

Summer Morning Routines


I have heard from moms that they struggle with having some type of morning routine with their kids in the summer.  It can be hard to transition from the structured school year routine of fast paced mornings to the slower paced “no-where to go” kind of morning.

I can remember when my kids were small that some days it was past noon before we got our act together.  Now, don’t get me wrong, there are days when that is great – but make sure you are planning to have a ‘lazy day’ at home instead of just letting it happen because of lack of routine.  You will end up wasting a lot of precious time that can be used in a more constructive way.

Kids do better with routine. [Read more…]

Friday Freebies


Here are some great freebies for you!  In addition, make sure you jump over to Families with Purpose to see my guest post, The Benefits of Nagging.” I hope you find the information useful in correcting some patterns of behavior that aren’t very helpful!  Feel free to leave me a comment – I love them!

How do you combat nagging?

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Enter the “One Warning Zone” – Do you Dare?


Do you ever think you would like to end the repeating, multiple warnings to stop unwanted behavior or repeating directions to your children?  What is stopping you?

An interesting point of conversation was brought up the other night in my ScreamFree Parenting Teleseminar, by author Hal Runkel.  What if you never gave two warnings EVER again?  How do you think your relationship with your child would change?  What would happen?  Would it be positive or negative?  Let’s take a minute and examine some of the ideas that came from the conversation the other night.

If you never gave two warnings ever again to your children, do you think they would learn to listen the first time you spoke?  We are creatures of habit and I can tell you that your children have grown accustom to you repeating yourself over and over for their benefit. Whether it is warnings, directions or requests, it is all the same. I love how Dr. Kevin Leman states this in his book, “How to Have a New Kid by Friday,”  (by the way, hate the title, like the concepts).  [Read more…]