3 Ways of Getting Your Kids to Want to Do the Things They Have To Do
In life, we all have to do things sometimes just because they’re the right things to do, whether we actually feel like doing them or not. This is true for adults, and it’s definitely true for kids, as well.
Of course, as any parent will tell you, forcing your kids to do their chores and finish their homework, while they are kicking and screaming and doing everything they can to wriggle out of it, isn’t a very pleasant experience for anyone involved. It can also lead to your kids developing an aversion to these kinds of responsibilities down the line.
The ideal is to find ways to get your kids to actually want to do the things they have to do. This isn’t always easy to accomplish, but here are a few tips that might help.
Use “gamification” technology
We all know that brushing and flossing our teeth on a regular basis, as well as using mouthwash, is extremely important. But judging by the fact that your local Cosmetic Dentist is probably doing really well for him or herself, actually maintaining good dental health – and keeping our dental hygiene habits in order – isn’t always a given.
Interestingly, there are now “interactive toothbrushes” available for kids, which turned the habit of brushing their teeth into a fun game.
These electric toothbrushes have little games and systems built in that encourage the child to brush their teeth for a certain length of time, or to keep up a regular habit, in order to win points, or to achieve some other objective.
This is an example of “gamification,” which is the practice of using principles from video games to make real habits more appealing.
Today, there are many different forms of “gamification” technology out there, to help engage your kids more directly with whatever it is they have to do. Have a look what’s out there, and you may be surprised by just how effective these tools can be.
Incentivize them to take the initiative, using small rewards
Some form of punishment is always going to be part of parenting a child. But, psychological research seems to suggest that positive incentives are a better way of getting kids to behave in a productive manner.
One way of getting your kids to actually want to do the things they have to do, is to incentivize them to take the initiative of their own accord, by giving them small rewards whenever they do.
These rewards could take the form of small amounts of pocket money, or stars on a star chart. Either way, when your kids have something to “work for,” you’ll likely see them becoming a lot more proactive about handling their chores.
Try to clearly explain the long-term benefits to them
“Because I said so,” is a well-known international parenting slogan that tends to get brought up whenever a child objects to having to do a certain task or chore, and asks why they need to.
But this answer is definitely unlikely to motivate a child to actually enjoy doing the chore. Instead, it’s more likely to breed resentment, and to convince the child that you are being completely arbitrary.
Instead, try to clearly explain the long-term benefits to your child, of them doing the chore. “If you do your homework well, you’ll be able have a better job one day,” for example.