Commands

HOW TO GIVE EFFECTIVE COMMANDS

EYES–Establish eye contact

WORDS–Name the behavior you want your child to stop or start. It helps your child to know exactly what you want.
Wrong: Stop that! Correct:Put those scissors on the table.Naming the desired behavior tells her exactly what to do. It gives the child a chance to comply immediately and gives you an opportunity to praise her.

BE SURE TO PHRASE YOUR COMMANDS AS A STATEMENT–
NOT A QUESTION

Don’t ask a question unless you will accept a “no” for an answer.
Don’t ask: Don’t you think it’s time for bed?
Say: It’s time for bed.

Don’t ask: Would you like to take your bath?
Say: Take your bath now, please.

VOICE

Your tone should be neutral, firm,
but not angry.

No matter how angry you feel,
try to remain calm.

I am not saying you should hide your anger from your child, just that your commands will be more effective if you appear to be in control.

TAKE YOURSELF SERIOUSLY

For a command to be effective you must say it as if you mean it. A child who feels you are committed is more likely to cooperate with you.

It’s best to make up your mind, commit yourself to wanting a behavior started or stopped, then give the command.

BROKEN RECORD
The Broken Record technique,
the simple repeating of the command,
is a wonderful tool for combating arguing or D.T. (diversionary tactics).To be effective you should remain very calm
and not change a word of your message.

If your child does the broken record back to you,
give up.
Use a warning or a consequence.

EXAMPLE

Dad: “It’s time for bed, Josh.”
Josh: “But it’s only 8:30”
Dad: “It’s time for bed, Josh.”
Josh: “No one else in my class has to go to bed at 8:30”
Dad: “It’s time for bed, Josh.”
Josh: “Everybody but me gets to watch TV ’till 9:30”
Dad: “It’s time for bed, Josh.”
Josh: “It’s not fair.”
Dad: “It’s time for bed, Josh.”
Josh: “Why do you keep saying that?”
Dad: “It’s time for bed, Josh.”
Josh: “All right, all right, just stop saying that stupid “It’s time for bed.”
Dad: “thank you, Josh. I’ll be up in a minute to kiss you good night.”