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I'm Avital.

You want a present, peaceful and playful family life? I'm here to help you make that a reality.

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Why Kids Don’t Listen

Does it frustrate you when you ask your children to do something, and they don’t do it? Do your kids ever tune you out or not hear you when you’re trying to talk to them? Do they ever dig in their heels or do the opposite of what you’re asking them to do? Doesn’t it just drive you CRAZY sometimes?? Or is it just me? 

In this episode we’re going to talk about why children don’t “listen” and what we can do to improve the odds they’ll cooperate and comply with our requests more often.  

  • [3:56] The term “listen” has become a euphemism for “obey.” 
  • [7:05] Let’s aim for this instead of obedience.
  • [9:40] There are times when we need our children to comply with a request.
  • [10:38] There are many reasons why kids…even you and me…don’t listen.
  • [13:09] They might be busy or in “flow.”
  • [13:56] They might have a more pressing need.
  • [16:04] Don’t have what they need (tools, skills, etc.) to fulfill a request.
  • [17:03] They might not understand what we’re asking.
  • [18:24] They don’t want to do what we’ve asked them to do.
  • [20:39] Hunter Clarke-Fields explains how we’re often the ones not listening. 
  • [24:31] How do we make ourselves heard? There has to be some friction that breaks their concentration.
  • [26:39] Go down to their level, make eye contact, and speak calmly, clearly, and in a way they can understand. 
  • [28:15] If you’re interrupting them, let them know when they can get back to what they were doing. 
  • [30:47] Sometimes you will still have to follow through and help them.
  • [32:38] Minimize the number of requests we make and only request things that are really important. 
  • [34:36] We must model listening by listening to them (as much as possible). 

We won’t (and can’t) do all of these things perfectly every single time, but it’s something to work toward. 

If you enjoyed this episode and it inspired you in some way, I’d love to hear about it and know your biggest takeaway. Take a selfie of you listening or a screenshot of the show, post it to Instagram stories, and tag me @parentingjunkie or feel free to DM me on Instagram, I try to reply to as many as I can!

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One Reply to “TPJ 40: Why Kids Don’t Listen”

  1. Dear Avital,
    Many thanks for this amazing podcast! Your work around leadership is fundamentally changing my parenting approach. When you talked about good bosses, I realised I chose a job in which I never meet my boss : my boss as a primary school teacher is …the President :). Of course there is hierarchy, but this made me realise how much I appreciate to be so far away from any boss figure, so you can imagine how little comfort I had trying to be a good leader for my two boys or for my pupils.
    This podcast is one example of all the handy tools you give us to create cooperation, love, happiness. I will try and speek less, at the right moment, respecting my boys’ activities as much as I wish they value my words.
    Speaking of words, I thank you so much for putting into words what we all feel into our daily lives without being able to clearly identify it.
    Sending all my love from France

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