Strong-willed kids can be very difficult to handle. However, somewhere down the line, that very quality can make them successful and you proud. It’s proven. Let’s consider the subject more deeply.
Be proud your kid is not blindly following the paths of others. Be happy he speaks his mind. Cherish the fact that he has ideas of his own. Be proud your kid is spirited. Be proud your kid is stubborn.
“Wake up for school.”
” NO. ”
“Finish your cereal.”
“Come help me with this.”
“Finish your homework.”
And again…a big “NO!”
Being a parent to a strong-willed kid, you get that a lot. A lot!
Which is why you tend to lose your temper and in the bat of an eye, the two of you are in a heated argument. A kid back-talking you! That little one is determined to have his own way. And there ain’t no way he/she is letting you win. So, you better cool down and think through all of this with a mind as calm as a tranquil sea. After all, that little one with a strong will is human, with feelings. What is it that makes him/her behave that way? Ever tried to place yourself in his/her shoes? Well it is time you first try to comprehend your tiny unwavering Stalin.
Take for instance, the former Miss World, Priyanka Chopra confessed in a recent television show that as a kid she said “NO” to everything that was said to her. She’d point-blank say “No” to going to school, “No” to eating breakfast, “No” to going to bed, “No” to not watching TV after bedtime. So, her clever mother employed a trick. She would ask her little girl not to go to school, and the little girl would say “NO”, and get ready to go to the school. Yeah. That simple! Priyanka thought that saying “No” made her feel powerful, that she cannot be controlled.
Hasn’t your therapist told you yet? It’s true that strong willed kids are more willing to do the right thing rather than follow their friends. These kids, if motivated, will do the right thing, even if it means doing it solo. Research says that stubborn kids are more likely to become educational overachievers, motivated leaders and high-income adults. It’s their determination that makes them stand out. They can be a pain in the neck, but once you understand them, it will all be worthwhile.
Here’s all you need to do to know if you have an amazingly high-spirited child.
Start using Positive Terminologies
Replace negative words describing your child; such as “stubborn”, “difficult”, bullheaded”, “manipulative”, with positive ones, like “persistent”, “sensitive”, “intense”, “determined”, “perceptive” and “energetic”. The moment you start using these words you’ll realize that quirky is the new charismatic. Your kid is different, making it a challenge for you. But once you start labelling him/her with positive terms, you would not have him/her any other way.
A Compelling Case Calls for Negotiation
By now you are aware of their “By hook or by crook” attitude. They have never had it any way but their way. You deny, they shout. You shout, they stomp. You stomp, they…well they sulk! As if that’s not enough, they throw tantrums. So, what do you do now? Now that they have made a compelling case- you negotiate. Do not agree to their demands. Let them get a bit of their own back at them. Let them see how difficult it is to face a ‘stubborn’ individual. Let them realize that saying “please” now and then, can make things easier for everybody.
Smother Your Little Rebel with Kisses
Rebels are good at masquerading. You think they won’t fall for your hugs and sweet-talk? Wrong! They would never display vulnerability. Stubborn children caught in a dilemma, stopping them from asking for love. They may not reveal their soft side, but they love you immensely and need your love. As a parent, it’s your responsibility to shower them with hugs and kisses when the need arises. Hear the unspoken. You might also want to check out The Importance of Making Eye Contact With Your Children
Make Him /Her Feel Important
For any family decision, involve your kids in the decision-making process. Give them a few options for the best choice, for say, their allowance, or what punishment is preferable to being grounded for a week. They should realize they will pay for their rigid behavior. But, nevertheless, you should consider what they have to say. After all, they are a part of the family, Their opinion, their say, their voice matters. You will notice that his mask fades a bit.
Never Ever Draw a Comparison
How would you feel if your kid told you that Rohan’s mother is better than you are. Burn! Right? Humans are sensitive, dear reader. Maybe your strong-willed kid doesn’t understand reasoning, but that’s alright. It’s not as if you’re always reasonable with him/her. There are days when one does not feel inclined towards complacency. But don’t start comparing your bull-headed kid with other kids. Maybe he/she got some of it from you. Why blame him/her?
His/her Future is Bright
Research shows that stubborn spirited kids are more likely to become motivated leaders and educational overachievers. They are less likely to follow others. Children determined to pave their own way. They have a strong intuition which helps them to decide between right and wrong. There is less chance that they will follow their friends into troublesome behavior. If motivated, they will go places. Once they are determined to score good grades in academics, they will achieve their goals. Be proud that your kid is going to change the world. Just let him/her be. And keep believing in his/her potential.
Oh, and do remember that genetics have a role to play in this. So, before you chastise your kid, try managing your own frustrations first. Then do as has been told to you. Pay attention, comprehend, feel, act.
Ask your kids those questions which can be answered positively. For instance, “Is chocolate your favorite flavor? ”
“Would you like to play football this evening?”
“You love Cheetos, right?”
“Do you like to paint?”
Be positive, believe, and most importantly, BE PROUD.