Suggestions and tips to say yes
The recommendation that sits on top of Suzanne Vallières psycho-tips list is integrating activities with children – fun or not – on a daily basis. We can’t really say no when those moments are planned and it prevents constant postponement.
So why not add a story to the bedtime routine at least once or twice a week? Or reserve an hour next Saturday to bake cookies and treats with your child. Because the time we spend with our child can also be spent on housework, it is well known that children like to help, says Mrs. Vallières.
“We must reintroduce our children in our lives. Instead of saying "no, I’m busy, go watch television", we must say, for example, "come with me, I will cut vegetables while you prepare the salad".”, she says.
She suggests buying ready-to-play boxes, filled with craft supplies for example. Your child wants to build paper planes? Take the box and build it with them. You can also fill a box with costumes if your child is a bit of a comedian!
Keep easy recipes on hand, it will be easier to find them if your little Chef wants to cook with you.
Finally, easy access to essential cleaning products is important if you don't want to fear the subsequent clean-up. And make it a rule: we cook or play together, and then we clean up together!
The benefits of saying “yes”
A child who knows that one of their parents will play with them at a specific moment during the day, like after their nap, will be more cooperative when we will ask them to brush their teeth, finish their glass of milk or stop fidgeting when it is time to nap.
Having fun and communicating often with their parents is an important element of the construction of your child’s memories, says the psychologist. Their personality lies on solid grounds thanks to those happy moments that will remain in their memory, says Mrs. Vallières.
When you say yes to your son or daughter who would like to draw something with you, you stimulate their creativity and you help them reach fulfilment, which is very important for their self-esteem and self-confidence.
The objective: to say yes!
Despite the fact that 98 % – an alarming number – of surveyed women deplore the lack of time with their children, a lot of families feel unable to find solutions. Participate in the "It all starts with Yes" challenge, which involves saying yes to your children more often to make you both happier. Hopefully, this little challenge will be the start to a new and great habit!
* The survey was conducted between August 30 and September 5, 2011, by Proctor and Gamble, with 419 mothers aged between 18 and 50 years old with children between 4 and 10 years old.