2. Create the illusion of choice

You wake up every morning and say something like „Get up and get dressed, we need to leave for school”, but you always end up being late? Your intentions are good, but your child might not react because of the way you communicate with him.

Offer your child the illusion of choice, so that he believes that he’s the one making the final decision. Also, it’s recommended that you offer your child options, because that way he learns how to make his own choices. This exercise will teach him how to be more independent.

Therefore, instead of emphasizing that you’re in a hurry, in order to make him get dressed faster – which, as you’ve probably already noticed, isn’t very efficient – emphasize his options:

„Do you want the green blouse or the pink one?”

„Do you want to put your trousers on first, or the blouse?”

The moment when your child starts working with you, and helps make the transition from pajamas to going-out clothes is the moment when, subconsciously, he has actually agreed to going to school / kindergarten. So  the entire morning routine will take place more calmly, with less tensions, because this approach also reduces conflicts.

 

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How do I convince the child to start working on homework, by using this technique?

First of all, allowing him to choose whether he’ll be doing his homework or not is out of the question. What you can do, however, is apply this technique when you present him these other options:

„Do you want to start with you math homework, or do English first?”

Or, if his homework is due after the weekend: „Would you like to work on your project today, or tomorrow?”

The secret here, aside from the illusion of choice, lies in the phrasing. As you’ve probably noticed, the parent isn’t just stating something, he’s asking, interrogating. A question suggests an openness to dialogue and, at the same time, narrows the status gap between the parent (superior)  and the child (inferior).

That way, the child will also be more open and willing to talk about homework and to actually get it done, because he won’t feel forced to do it, the parent doesn’t pressure or force him into it.

 

How do I convince the child to eat?

When the child won’t eat his vegetables, you can use questions again: „Would you like to taste the carrots or the broccoli?”

And if your kid is glued to his cell phone, here’s how you can use the same technique: „While we’re eating, would you like to leave the phone in your room or in the hallway?”

 

3. Talk to your child as if listening to you goes without saying

Have you ever thought about how strong the word whencan be? Of course not. I hadn’t either!

Until I discovered the technique that relies on it and saw how great the results generated by it can be.

Here’s what I’m talking about: when you use the word „when”, on a subliminal level you’re actually telling your child that the task that he’s (not) supposed to do is a given (it goes without saying that it is going to get done!)

 

Here are a few examples:

„When you’re done picking up your toys, than you can eat your meal”

„When you’ve finished with your math homework, than you can go out and play”

„When you get dressed, we’ll go have some breakfast”

 

When you familiarize yourself with this technique, you’ll be able to add two more assumptions. It’s the same technique used by salesmen, especially at car dealerships, to convince their customers to close the deal.

When we return from the test drive, we can choose the colors for the interior and the optionals.” – As you can probably notice, the client wasn’t asked if he wanted to do the test drive, he was led step by step towards closing the deal.

This technique can be quite successfully used by parents as well, if they see it less as a form of manipulation, and more as a way of using trivial words in a way that guarantees that the message is phrased in the most efficient manner possible.

 

How do I convince a child to do his homework?

Here’s an example of how you can use this technique in its advanced form, with assumptions, when it comes to homework:

„When you’ve finished with the theoretical part, you’ll see how easy the exercises will feel”

„When you’ve finished reading the lesson, you’ll see how easy it becomes to remember…”

Subtly, send your child the message that the task he’s supposed to do is as good as done, that all it takes is one small step and he’ll see the results.

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So, in order to get better results in the communication with your child, just use these simple strategies, whose utility has already been proven and that are successfully used on a daily basis in sales, the one field where the art of communication makes the difference between losing or closing a deal.

We’re not talking about manipulation here, we’re talking about the intelligent use of key words, as well as about avoiding others. The final goal here is to learn to communicate efficiently, to reduce the tensions within the family and to use all the instruments in order to establish harmony in the household.

And if this involves these simple strategies, than why not take this small step?

Because today I worked from home, I needed a few hours to finish this article. But I enjoyed every interruption, because I had the opportunity to try out all the strategies above. And I’m actually working on the last one right now, because it’s challenging for me to become more aware of the words I’m using and to try this linguistic exercise.

At first, you’ll probably find it a bit odd to change the way you phrase the things you tell your child, to replace certain words, but trust, me, it’s the easiest thing you can do right now!

By reading about these techniques, you’ll find that everything actually makes sense, and that the question of how to make the child do what you ask seems to be finally getting a real answer, right?

 

We’re looking forward to feedback from you: let us know which of these strategies was the most challenging for you.

 

 

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