Hi it’s Dr Cale again. This is day three I believe. We’re talking about having the best year ever and making sure that you have a clear idea of what you can do to generate, to produce, to support your children in thriving this year academically on the playground with their peers and in taking care of those responsibilities around the house just have a joyful year of thriving and to get into the habit of success.
So, yesterday I talked about the importance of getting that daily routine on paper. Getting it up somewhere where everybody can see it and everybody knows. You know they know that we’re serious about these daily routines that this is the order that things are going to do go in and secondly that there’s this little secret that I slid in there that is so important that you learn to master. I talk about this much more on my back-to-school secrets program where I walk you through the details of how to get academic success in an effortlessly easy way. But one of the core components of that program is using this work than play formula and using it in a way that you gain impeccable control over that afternoon routine so you don’t end up nagging and prodding and reminding and pushing and prodding and screaming and yelling and arguing.
And for some of you, uh you’ll also fall into the habit of working harder at your children’s success than they do. Now, what do I mean by that? Well, I mean that as uh as a child starts to go into these into the academic world now if they’re bright and they’re capable and they just suck things up and there they learn so easily it’s unlikely that you’ll have a problem with this but if you see that your child struggles for one reason or another. It doesn’t really matter if there’s a diagnosis involved or not and you begin to start to help them and the more that they encounter difficulty, you help them and then there’s difficulty and you help them.
The danger there is this that they learn that every time there’s a struggle in front of them, their little brains start to believe it’s your job to fix, it’s your job to find the answer, it’s your job to help me get through this. Now, initially, if it’s if they’re just learning to write their letters or they’re learning to read or they’re struggling a bit with their multiplication tables, It doesn’t seem like a big deal to keep helping them but what you want to look out for is whether every time that something’s a little bit difficult, your child wants to give up they say I can’t do this mom help me it starts to sound much more like a whining, complaining moment rather than a help me solve this problem moment and that’s an important distinction that I don’t have time to go into now.
But I will mention it so you put in the back of your mind is my child really asking for help or is this a complaint because they don’t want to put more effort, they don’t want to work this hard and you’ll hear it in their voice you’ll hear this kind of whining sort of statement: I don’t know how to do this or this is too hard or the teacher didn’t show me. Be careful in those situations because it’s very likely that your child’s headed down the path of learning that when things are difficult, they give up easily and they ask for help and it’s not like one day the switch changes it’s not like they hit 10 or 12 or 14 and suddenly they go boom you know I think I’ll do it all on my own.
Now, that habit tends to stay ingrained so you got to look out for it and it relates to this first point that I was making that you’ve got to be careful that when your child encounters an age-appropriate struggle that you’re never working harder than they are for their success. In other words, you’re willing to help them, you’re willing to support them but you don’t want to actually put in more effort more brainpower into this than they do because the more that you do the more you run the risk that they’ll start to get lazy and allow you to work harder than they do and again one particular moment, not a big deal a couple of times it doesn’t matter it’s when it becomes a habit that I really start to get worried and concerned about this.
So, that’s the first point that I want to make today and the second point that I want to make in this video is really a point about modeling and how important it is that we pay close attention as we establish those habits of success as we begin to build our children’s habit pattern in the right direction that we notice what we’re modeling every single day. And what do I mean by this? I mean that we have to be careful that if we’re asking our children to live in this consistent routine and we know that that will help them to thrive that their life will be easier and better we want to take a look in the mirror we want to look at how we manage our own routines we want to make sure that we’re not using our words to try to tell our children to do something that we haven’t yet mastered so we want to make sure that we are a model for the very example we want to be the example that we want our children to live we want to model that consistent routine for them so that they’ll then understand how that makes dad’s life easier that makes mom’s life easier.
The second part of modeling is that we have to be very careful because it’s kind of cool in a way because when working with parents and giving presentations to large groups of parents, I’ll often ask how many of you find that you’re it feels like you’re just nagging and reminding and prodding and pushing and yelling and arguing way too much and usually about three-quarters of the audience puts up their hand and then I also will ask well how many of you find that your kids seem like they’re whining and nagging and they just keep asking the same thing over and over and over and they don’t take no for an answer they just keep at it and at it about the same three-quarters put up their hands.
Well, there’s no great mystery here and it relates to this issue of modeling if I model to my children that when they’re not giving me what I want from them, I just keep nagging them, I keep reminding them, I keep prodding, I push, I argue, I do everything. I can try to get my way if I model that I have to expect my children are going to learn that that’s how you get what you want that means doesn’t it make sense. if I model for my children that the way that dad gets what he wants is that I nag, I remind, I yell, I scream, I keep at it at a heart. if I do that every day, I’m teaching this is how I get what I want well how can I not expect my children then to see that this is the way it works, this is how I get what I want.
So, you then have to expect that your kids are going to come back at you and they’re going to be nagging nagging nagging and when you say no, no doesn’t mean anything when you say no the second time, it doesn’t mean anything you get frustrated then particularly as they move into those pre-adolescent adolescent years, it just seems like it’s relentless they just won’t stop well guess what they’re bringing back to you the very thing that they grew up with. In other words, you modeled this for them, you showed them this is the path to getting what you want and they learn it well and then it comes back in boatloads.
So, almost anywhere you turn whether we’re talking about routines or whether we’re talking about the way that you interact with your kids and they interact with you we see that it’s important for us to first pay attention to what do you model and the more that you model the kind of behavior you want from your kids you’ll find life gets easier it’s not the whole enchilada it’s not everything but it’s an important beginning because here’s one place that you can’t cheat. In other words, you can’t be sloppy in your own routines and then think that you’re going to nurture your children to have consistent healthy daily routines you can’t be modeling.
For example, overeating and not exercising and then harp on your children about getting outside and playing more and taking them to the soccer field and expecting them to get excited they probably won’t be you can’t model that you can nag and remind and nag and nag and nag and nag and not expect your kids to be nagging naggy nagging at you or end at each other by the way so modeling thinks about what are the kinds of things, what are the kinds of behaviors, what are the kinds of habits I’d really like for my children to see because if they could see me walking my talk with those habits if they could see me living that life consistently it’s more likely that they’re going to live that kind of consistent healthy life.
That’s your task for today to get down on paper to write it down once again and if you can have a dialogue with your husband or your wife or your partner about okay what are these habits that I want to model for my children and to make a personal resolve a personal commitment, I will walk my talk and model the habits that are going to support a consistent routine that will support a healthy interaction a lifestyle that will help me thrive and help my children thrive.
So, I hope you’ll follow through with that. I hope you’ll make that commitment and get it on paper tomorrow I’ve got another secret for you another tip that’s going to be remarkably valuable in helping you to get on with a successful and thriving academic year. This is Dr. Cale, take care and I’ll talk to you tomorrow bye now.