How to stop saying NO to your children

 Do you feel like a broken record?

No, put that down.

No, out of your mouth.

No running.

No hitting.

No screaming.

For many children hearing NO is a behavioral trigger.  This means that not only do adults have to try to stop the original misbehavior (the one they were saying NO to), but now adults have to help calm a child who is now having a meltdown or being defiant.

Think about you like being told NO?  I know I sure don't!

How do we stop saying "NO?" What can we do instead?

Change the Environment:

Look at your space.  What can you move or take out to prevent the misbehavior?  

Can you remove all the small Legos that your child puts in her mouth?  
Can you put up your breakable decorations? 
Can you arrange your furniture to prevent runways?
Is there a toy that your child ALWAYS takes away from a sibling?  Can you get another?

Remember it is much easier to change the child's environment versus changing the child.

Write down why you are saying no:

Once you know what you are saying NO to, you will have  starting point for change.  
Write these on a piece of paper.  Type them into the notes section on your phone as you say them.  

Write down positive alternatives:

What are positive alternatives?  They are directives that tell the child what you want them TO DO. They are written in a positive manner.  

For example: 
"Nice touches" instead of "No hitting"
"Walking feet" instead of "No running"
"Use your inside voice" instead of "No screaming"
"Hands down" instead of "No!  Do not pull her hair!"

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