Working with stubborn behavior can be frustrating and trying. It can easily ruin a fun-filled day of activities or just make every day mundane tasks a burden. Remember, stubbornness is a behavior that can be changed! Below are some tips that you can use to help decrease a child’s stubborn behavior.
Here are 5 tips to work through stubborn behavior:
- Give choices. For example, you can give a choice of which chore the child wants to do. This often works as a win/win situation. The child get’s control what he or she does and the child still follows your direction.
- Give clear simple directions. Sometimes the wordiness of our directions can send the message that we can negotiate. Give as simple of a direction as possible.
- Use first/then language. This gives a child a clear understanding of what will happen.
- Stay calm. If a child has stubborn behavior, try not to let that behavior upset you. With a neutral attitude/tone/body language, follow up with the child.
- Reinforce following directions (non-stubborn behavior). When a child follows directions with no argument, reinforce that behavior. Be specific with your praise and why you are providing praise or other reinforcement.