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How Do I Get My Kids to Listen the First Time?

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How do you get your kids to listen right away? Is there a magic solution or something to get them to listen the first time you give directions?

I can totally relate to this question! My default response was to call out directions to my kids such as, “Can you help me put this laundry away? Did everyone get dressed for the day and brush your teeth and your hair? By the way, would you clean up these Legos so that I can vacuum?” The whole time I was talking, I was walking to the bedrooms with my hands full of laundry. While I heard a muffled, “OK!” I would come out of the bedrooms wondering why all three kids were still playing Legos. They hadn’t moved an inch towards doing all the things I had just named.

You already know what happened next. Frustration quickly set in. How come I have to tell my kids like three times to do something? Sometimes I felt that it was just easier and faster to do it myself. But it is impossible for me to do it all. And why should I clean up after them when they are perfectly capable and responsible to take care of their own toys, laundry, and bedrooms?

If you in any way are experiencing the same things I did, I invite you to tune in to this Q&A Thursday where I share the practical things I do today to get my kids to listen the first time.

We have covered several great tips in this Q&A Thursday, including:

1:10 – Tip #1 When you are asking your children to do something, STOP! Stop what you are doing. Look them right in the eyes. Smile. Say their name. Make sure that you have their attention. Then give them one direction. Say it with honour, edification, and full belief that they will do it right away with a good attitude.

Watch this episode of @ Home with the KIDS to learn more about Tip #1.

Watch the Video

3:01 – Tip #2 Why wait until your children don’t listen? Here’s what you can you do before you need to give directions.

7:05 – Tip #3 What is that magic potion to get your kids to listen right away? If you could bottle consistency, I’d say that’s your magic potion!

8:25 – Tip #4 Teach your children to respond to your directions by saying these six words.

9:55 – Tip #5 You already know this but I’ll say it again here. We teach our children to listen the first time so that they stay safe.

10:45 – Tip #6 Relate the importance of following directions to when they are older and working in a job or a place of business. Share a time when you were given directions and didn’t listen the first time. What were the consequences?

Now I would love to hear from you.

What part of this episode resonated most and why? What will you do tomorrow to help your children to listen the first time.

Leave a comment below and let me know. Share as much detail as possible in your reply. You matter to me.

Important:   Keep your comments positive, as no bad attitudes are allowed here.  Nor is judgment or criticism allowed.  We are here to cheer each other on in this amazing parenting journey together.  Links to other posts, videos, etc. will be removed.

It’s important that you heart this:

Remember to stay consistent even if you feel as though you’ve said the same thing a hundred times. Keep expecting your children to listen the first time that you ask. Your consistency will pay off.

With enormous love,


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