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October 7, 2012

Time To Go

Testing True Desire 

What it is

The time everyone plans to leave the house together heading out for something fun.  

Why it's Important

Shared goals unify families, whether it's to leave on time or to experience something together. By recognizing your kids as contributors, you show them respect and trust:

 

Respect

Your son knows what he needs and can prepare himself.

 

Trust 

Your daughter knows what she wants and will choose wisely.

The Problem

Kids (even parents) struggle with on time departure when they don’t really want to go. Personal desire gets misinterpreted for feelings of obligation to family or friends. If your son says he wants to meet friends at the community teen center but isn't ready on time, does he really want to go to the teen center?

 

Parent intervention seems supportive, but what if NOT going was really the best choice for your child after all?

The Tip

Missing the bus

Experiment with a different kind of support; support for your child’s true desires.

Step 1:  Opportunity

Choose an opportunity with fewest complications. 

Good Choice:  Going to a friend’s house, an informal family outing, etc. 

Not-So-Good:  Going to school or the doctor.

Step 2:   Collaborate 

Set the departure time with your kids. Show them how to work backward from an on-time arrival objective.     

Step 3:  Departure Lounge

Be clear that everyone meets in the car when it’s time to go.

Step 4: 

Questions? 

Just ask for questions.  If none, assume she’s all set and let her know you won’t be disrespecting her with nagging reminders.

Step 5: 

Oh it is SO hard to keep quiet when the clock is ticking and he’s not moving.  You'll be tempted to 'help' with reminders, but that's not really helping, is it?  Allow him to experience his true desire and be proud of him even if he doesn’t make the bus.
Step 6: 

Drive Away

Yes, leave her home if she doesn't make it on time. Call from the car -- hands free please – letting her know you left as planned. This way she won’t worry.

  Drive Away Dos and Don'ts

Do tell her you left on time

  

Don't criticize

  

Do tell her when you'll be home

  

Don't linger on the phone

  

Do make sure she has adequate supervision

Step 7: 

Debrief

When you get home, or even the next day, talk about your experiment and help him understand the outcome.  Link real-world lessons about schedules and other people's expectations of punctuality.  Help him frame the whole thing in the context of uncovering the power of true desire. 

Your intention with this debrief is to help your child learn about himself--period.   

Debrief Dos and Don'ts

Do link personal desire to actions.

We always do what we want

(not always what we say we want.)

  

Don't remind him about the past. 

Reference to past frustrations hints of

martyrdom and you probably won't hear

what you want from him anyway.

  

Do invite him to express his anger

and frustration fully and respectfully.

  

Don't feel responsible for his

embarrassment with friends

or  missed opportunity regret.

  

Remember two important things:

1.     True desire get's people moving.         

2.     Maybe it was better this way after all.

  

Do congratulate yourself!

It isn’t easy supporting kids

like this, but you did it!  Yay!

Benefits!

 Small Consequences Learning curves apply to everything, including time management and true desires.  Best to make mistakes now when the worst your kids will experience is embarrassment or a missed party
 Awareness

With only her true desires to motivate her actions, she becomes aware of her true desires.

 Peace

No more nagging!  He’s either in the car or not, either way you both win!

Influence Delegating responsibility to your child is outward recognition her personal growth.  Such a compliment! She will listen and watch for more.
Promise Kept

We promise to teach our kids to choose wisely.  Since the wisest choices are based on personal desire, it’s vital we help them learn what it is they truly desire.  Stepping back grants the freedom to choose and makes good on the promise.

 

Related Articles:  Consistency in Boundaries,

Related Tip of the Week: Not Nice, April Fools (The Cinnamon Challenge) 

 

  Chime in >> What do you think?

 

Tip of the Week - Time To Go

  Email Lorraine with your question 

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