Do you have mom phrases that you keep coming back to while raising your kids? “Try that again,” is one of those phrases that we are saying over and over again with our kids. Raising kids is about teaching. Sometimes that comes with rewards and sometimes is comes with consequences. Often times it comes with teaching by example and by words. “Try that again,” is a gentle phrase that teaches kids how to say things in a more effective way.
Whining. Ugh. My kids don’t get what they want when they whine. Period. It amazes me how we’ve been so consistent with that rule and yet they still whine. If it’s whining for something that would be considered a bonus gift of some sort (a treat, a toy at the store, a t.v. show, etc.), the answer is automatically no. However, sometimes they whine just to whine. They might be frustrated, and it is just one of those innate kid things that must be tackled as a parent. I know it’s a developmental phase. I have one method of tackling the whining and crying by giving them time to get self control. I have other techniques I use too. I know it is annoying, but it is important to keep your composure and teach. One of our phrases we use is, “Try that again.” We got this phrase from the Pritchards.
This morning was a good example. My daughter said, “Will you help me put my tights on, please.” That sounds very pleasant, doesn’t it? You can’t hear her shrill, whiny voice that is going along with that question. Re-say that sentence in a whiny voice…not so sweet sounding anymore, huh? So, I said the phrase, “Try it again.” She did…not much improvement. So, I demonstrated for her what a sweet voice sounds like. “Try it again.” Ahhh…success. I was able to help her with her tights.
Another phrase I try and teach my children is to respond with, “Yes, Mommy.” Sometimes they don’t. They roll their eyes or ignore them. I can give them a quick second chance to do what I’ve asked with a simple, “Try that again.”
Other times, my children have an attitude problem. They might growl at me (literally – really?) and scowl. They might walk through the door in fight mode. I will send them back through that door and say, “Let’s try that again.” They can come out with a more pleasant attitude or just keep trying. I want to know what is going on with them, and I will sit down and talk about what they are feeling. I think it’s important to show empathy. However, kids need to learn how to respond appropriately to their feelings. I know it’s hard. It takes a lifetime of learning. I know there are days where I feel grumpy. I wake up and don’t quite feel myself. However, I have a choice to make. Am I going to make everyone’s life miserable and respond in a way that hurts our family or helps our family? Part of parenting is helping our kids make positive choices with their attitude and actions. “Try that again,” is one of those phrases that is great for this kind of teaching.