This is part three of our short series on “Loving Our Kids on Purpose.” Ideas shared in this series of blog posts and YouTube videos comes from a book by Danny Silk with that title. It’s available on Amazon and from Danny Silk’s website.
Steve and I purchased the workbook and read through it together. It provided us with some really great skills and tools to help us deal with our increasingly amazing and very strong-willed little four-and-a-half-year-old daughter. And it will be good for our newborn, as she comes of age.
In our first blog post, we talked about fun and no fun. We talked in our second video about hassle time and how that has saved us a lot of hassle. In today’s blog, I’d like to talk about choices.
For seasoned parents, this is definitely not anything new but parents it’s important to present children choices in a controlled way. For example, it may not be so good to say, “Hey, what do you want for dinner?” Mine would tell me every single time, “Pancakes with maple syrup and lots of butter.” Maple syrup before bed. Nah, probably not gonna happen.
I don’t know why we didn’t understand this before, but reading about these ideas was like flipping on a light switch. Now, it’s like, “Okay, honey, do you want to have chicken, rice and vegetables, or would you rather have spaghetti?” I’m giving her two good options, both of which are okay with me, which is empowering for her because she gets to choose.
Every once in a while, she’ll push the boundary and say, “Pancakes!” Even though I’ve given her her two acceptable choices, but the point is to provide our kids the freedom to make choices and let them have a say in their lives in a safe way.
We Stopped Making All Her Decisions
We have officially stopped making all her decisions for her. With babies we automatically make decisions so the transition of letting her make her own choice was something we had to be intentional about. This little person is beginning to have her own opinions and she wants to do things a certain way. This workbook actually helped us realize that we had moved into a new season with our daughter. It is important to teach our children how to make good choices.
To recap, I may say, “Do you want to wear the blue pants or the red pants?” Sometimes we give her three choices if she is up to it. For example bedtime books “Which one of these three books do you want to read?” or whatever. Giving her choices is huge. She feels in her four-and-a-half- year-old capacity and understanding of her world, that she’s making her own choices and deciding how things are going to be. It’s totally fine with me because I’ll read whichever book she wants.
Nor do I care what she picks for dinner out of the two choices that I give her, because it empowers her and gives her sense of being heard. It’s definitely helping our daughter because she is a natural-born leader and we want to foster that gifting. Loving Your Kids on Purpose, has helped us realize how to do that better.
We have more ideas from Loving Our Kids On Purpose in these blog posts:
- Part 1 – Loving Our Kids on Purpose: Choices and the No Fun Chair
- Part 2 – Loving Our Kids on Purpose: Hassle Time
- Part 3 – This post
There is a ton we can learn from each other, so please feel free to share your thoughts and experiences in the comments below. Speaking of learning from each other, stop over and take a look at our FaceBook page. We post new material every day. It’s all family material; some of it funny, some helpful, some inspiring and some surprising.
We also have a YouTube channel now with over 80 videos all about family. I would be delighted to have you join us on a regular basis….we publish a new video every week, and if you subscribe, you’ll get notifications when we post new material.
Thanks for stopping by today! Have a great day. 🙂