Sunday, March 17, 2013

Parenting Tip - A Win-Win Technique

My daughter in law was telling me what a great Dad my son is and how good his parenting skills are.  She told me about a major conflict they were going to have with their 10 year old son who had saved up his money to buy a certain video game.  But she said Ammon, my son, had handled it so well, that there was no issue or fight after all. 
When their son, Jonas, bought the video game, they discovered it had a lot of violence that they weren’t aware of, and they quickly saw how addicting the game was and how it was causing problems.  Ammon sat down with Jonas and calmly pointed out that there were issues with the video game that they needed to problem solve.  Then he listed the problems, which were the violence and wanting to spend too much time playing the game and not doing homework and chores.  

Ammon asked Jonas what he thought they could do about it.  Jonas quickly replied that there were restrictions that could be put on the levels to avoid too much violence.  Then he thought, and said, “Well, I don’t really have any time to play it except on Wed afternoons and Saturdays, so maybe I could just play it on those days and not the rest of the week.”

My grandson came up with good solutions for the problems and since he helped create the rules surrounding the playing of the video game, he was willing to stick with the rules.

What a great parenting technique to use when family problems arise.  Let the children help problem solve the issues—then they feel like their ideas and feelings are respected by their parents and they are willing to cooperate and in turn, respect their parents’ feelings and ideas.  It’s a win-win situation.

So many issues can be problem solved this way, from how to get ready for school on time to bedtime routines, or homework or bath time conflicts. Kids are creative and often have great solutions that we haven’t even thought about.

Have you had your children help problem solve areas of conflict?  I love the ideas kids come up with. My children were willing to practice the piano for a box of cereal of their choice--the sugary kind I usually wouldn't buy.  Easy way to get piano practicing done!

Share with us what things have worked with your family.

Thanks for reading,


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