How often in a day do our children ask us for something and we jump on auto pilot and say NO?
While there are certainly times to say no, there are also many times when we can stop, evaluate, rephrase and choose YES!
A while ago, we are all getting ready to walk to the recycling center and my son asked to stay home alone. Being 5 years old, I didn’t feel it was appropriate but I also did not want to answer with a big fat NO because I knew, in that moment,he was totally immersed into his play and a giant NO was only going to close the doors on our communication.
Instead, I looked for ways to transform our situation into something that would lead to YES:
Me: I can see you are having so much fun with your playmobil.
My son says: Yes, he is on an adventure.
Me: Adventure, cool! Maybe there is a way for the playmobil adventure to continue but still help with the recycling?
My son asks: Can I bring my playmobil dude with us? And can I also throw the glass bottles in (at the recycling center he meant), I like to hear them crash.
Me: Yes and Yes! Let’s go!
Can you imagine how this might have been different if I had just said “NO! Staying home is alone NOT an option…let’s go!”
Transforming the NO moment into a conversation based on connection, understanding and searching for the YES meant we BOTH got what we needed!
How can you transform NO into YES?