Rephrasing “No!”

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As a parent, saying “no” seems to come so naturally.  And I do think it has an important place in my vocabulary.  However, I find it can really shut down a conversation when I lead with it.  SO in an effort to keep it positive, I have challenged myself to create a list of how I could say yes instead of no.

Just a little background story; we have desserts at our house, just not every day.  I like to think I am teaching my children how to enjoy sweets in moderation.  I also believe in helping them develop an ability to delay gratification/patience.

“Mom can I have a cookie?”

“No!”

   or

1. Yes, after you finish your dinner.

2. Thats a great idea, when should we have cookies, after lunch or after dinner?

3. Yes, tomorrow I will have fresh cookies available after dinner.

4. Yes, when we go to the store next, we can choose some cookies.

5. Yes, I love to bake with you, lets find a recipe.

6. I love to share a sweet treat with you, shall we enjoy it after dinner today or tomorrow?

7. When would you like a cookie, today or tomorrow?

8. Yes, but I don’t have any cookies, can we enjoy some sweet fruit together?

9. Yes.  Lets choose which day this week you would like a cookie.

10. Yes, let’s have cookies, what a great idea.

One thought on “Rephrasing “No!”

  1. Kathleen Dean

    Hi Sarah,

    This is a great post. I often tell parents to find ways to say Yes instead of No.

    When I hear adults say their children are always saying No, I can’t help but wonder what those children are used to hearing…No…Stop…Don’t…Quit…No…No…No.

    The absorbent mind is hard at work!

    Reply

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