Know How to Say No!

May 22, 2013


How often do we parents fret and fuss because we have to say no to our kids a million times a day? ‘Yes’ always is music to kids’ ears and but at times it is necessary to say no to your preschool child simply to bring in some discipline into the home. There are ways to make your ‘No’ seem less harsh; try these tips straight from child professionals and experienced mothers.

Train yourself not to give in to pleading, whining, tantrums and tears – the whole drama; just to keep peace. This will and can only lead to more of the same behavior and doing something about it much later will only add to your problems. Your child should never have the understanding that he has the power to influence you and wear you down with threats.

When you plan to say ‘no’, make it sound like conversational. You don’t need to be shrill and loud because nobody likes a tone like that. There are more chances of rebellion when your tone is shrill than when your tone is neutral. Having said that, your tone should however have the seriousness and weight to convey your authority.

Try some creativity when you want to say no. Instead of the quick snap of ‘no’, try flipping it into a ‘yes, but some other time’ or ’yes, you can have a candy; but right after dinner’. You can also put your no into options like ‘you can either play ball outside, or just roll it inside the house – your choice’.

Think about your ‘no’ before you actually say it. With preschool kids, we sometimes take for granted that their each request will be ridiculous and we need to say no every time. Empathize with your child when his feelings are hurt when you have to say no. If you are saying no for a playdate your child is dying to go to, tell him why you have to say no. Tell him you understand how badly he wants to go, but there is a reason why you can’t let him. In addition, tell him when he can go instead. This will not break his heart as badly.

Try to put in just as many ‘yes’ when you say ‘no’. A good balance is the key to successful parenting – whether your child is of a preschool age or older.