January 23, 2018

Responsibility is a Four Letter Word!

Lazy KidI have a child who is self-declared lazy. He has no bones about looking you straight in the eye and saying “NO” when asked to do something. And if he is mad because he can’t do something he wants, simply walking away is his method of rejection your request. Only if there is a tangible reward, he may comply. But if he can’t get his way, no carrot is sufficient.  Sadly, sometimes he will let others down just to not give in to us. Yeah, it is a lesson in frustration.

Now don’t get me wrong. We have trained this child up since he was a toddler, “brush your teeth, make your bed, get dressed”. As the years have progressed, daily and weekly chores were added with appropriate training, rewards and eventually consequences if needed. Then he hit adolescence and found out he has power. And the boy who decided at 2, he no longer wanted to wear diapers and potty trained himself in 3 days, used that inner drive to get only what we wants in life. I gotta teach this kiddo about accountability.

Since we can check off the training, we must still work on rewards and consequences.  I did find some good tips on how to do this in the Total Transformation parenting information.

A Different Way of Saying Things

Words are powerful. It always amazes how adding (or sometimes deleting!) a word can totally open up the communication between two people. Boy, can I use that for this new challenge.

  1. Responsibility. Start pointing out all the responsibilities everyone in all the house is doing. “Cooking dinner is my responsibility”. “Dad’s responsibility is going to work so we can have food so I can cook dinner.” “Brushing your teeth is a responsibility”. You get it, I am sure.
  2. Rewards. Now use the same philosophy with rewards. “This is your reward for doing your homework”. “You are getting this reward because you didn’t yell at your brother today”.
  3. Consequences. Then – “This is the consequences for not completing your schoolwork”. You are getting this consequence because you didn’t complete your chores this morning”.

It might be helpful to have worked up some rewards and consequences beforehand. That way you don’t have to think on your feet. Ask them what they would like rewards to be, like what they would like to do. Just be sure it doesn’t money, buying or spending!  And remember teens rewards do not usually involve spending time with you.

Consequences also can be discussed.  This may look like withholding things, like electronics, or assigning extra chores. It is important here to find the buttons that work. If I were to withhold electronics and then assign extra chores, I would be spitting in the wind. Also, I have had to learn to be reasonable about my time lengths for consequences.

So I had better get started with this new language. The clock is ticking…

That’s a couple Total Transformation Techniques that work for us. For many more tools and techniques make sure to check out Total Transformation today. It’s worked for us!

About the author: By

Julie is an awesome parent (along with her husband Matt) to five adopted kiddos and the owner of the Parenting Allies website.

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  1. This is exactly what we are doing in the house. When the kids done something good or got a high grades we gave them a reward and treat them in the mall. This is our way of showing them that we really appreciate the things they have done.

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