This morning as I was getting Zoey ready for school, she refused to put on her school uniform. I tried a few times, with her saying 'no' loudly each time. I knew that doing it the straightforward way wasn't going to cut it, so I had to innovate. She has a favourite soft toy dog called Buster, and so I asked her, "Since Buster is going to school with you, can Buster wear your uniform?" She was amused, and said 'yes' (Yay! no more nos...). So I put the uniform on, and we both had a laugh. Then came the next question, "Zoey, the uniform is too big for Buster, would you like to wear it?" To which she promptly said 'YES'! And without incident, she wore it and was happy to go to school. In the car, I affirmed her, "Thank you for putting on your uniform!"
1. As adults, we think of the logical way to do something and tend to stick to it, especially if we are short on time. In this case, it would have been so easy for her to just PUT IT ON! But we don't really know what they are thinking, so making assumptions that it's straightforward isn't always helpful.
2. Putting a fun spin on a daily event helps in getting it done. In this case, tapping into her favourite toy caught her attention, and made it MUCH MORE FUN and innovative. Best part? The 'nos' became 'yeses'!
3. In order for me not to get annoyed with the situation, I took a moment to THINK ABOUT THE OUTCOME I was looking for: getting to her to school peacefully. If I had pushed, i knew it would have resulted in the situation. It might have been faster to just keep saying PUT IT ON, but if it led to a tantrum it would actually use up far more time trying to pacify her.