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We tend to think we know what’s best for our children in all matters. However, they do need to be allowed to experience for themselves so they learn their own limits. Trust your child and be on hand if they need your assistance. Download Book 1, ‘Being a Parent’ FREE right now!

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PostHeaderIcon My Son Won’t Do Anything!

Dear Supernanny,

My 13-year old son is totally uncooperative! It doesn’t matter what I ask him to do, he just says he’ll do it later. All he wants to do is sit in front of his computer or Nintendo or whatever he wants to do and I’m really at the end of my tether continually asking and getting nowhere.

I really don’t want him to grow up to be a person who can’t do anything for himself, like my husband, whose mother did everything for him.

Please help!

Karen, Donegal

Supernanny replies:

Unfortunately, with the age of IT came the age of the children who preferred to sit indoors playing electronic games. But it’s not all their fault. As parents, we’ve become accustomed to using television and these games as ‘babysitters’ from an early age, because we know it keeps them quiet, where we know they are and out of our hair!

It requires time and effort to encourage children to do other things, which develops the skills they need to become self-sufficient adults. A firm hand is required about the amount of time they spend on computers and games but once you make the rules, you must stick to them. Therefore if you say, they are allowed to spend half an hour a day on their Nintendo, you must adhere to that and not allow them to go over that time. It’s like anything else, children need boundaries and this has to be one of them.

If you want your son to do some jobs for you or even his homework, you could simply say that unless those jobs or homework is done first, there will be no computer or whatever it is he wants to do.

At the same time, it means taking the time to involve your son in activities, such as cooking, which most children really enjoy. Supervised outdoor games, eg, football, judo, karate or learning a musical instrument draws out their creativity and gets them away from those electronic games.

Years ago, there wasn’t this problem; children went out to play, got plenty of fresh air and ran themselves into tiredness, which kept them fit and healthy. Nowadays, we have to keep a handle on their activities and firmly encourage new pastimes for them to learn, and learn to enjoy.

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I think the focus of your course is brilliant as it took me years at university and doing college courses to gain some of the information you have managed to compact into these e-books. Conscious parenting is very much a step in the right direction for people wanting to be more aware of their relationship with all people (including themselves). It is an extremely thorough, well thought out and planned course. I actually can’t fault it – well done!

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Featured Book
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There comes a time when we do have to deal with unwanted behaviour without blaming and shaming. Book 11 gives step-by-step guidance to using the ‘4-part I challenge’ which encourages the desired change from your child without resorting to attack and blame.
When we challenge unacceptable behaviour, we want to do it while remaining friends with our children. Encouraging high self-esteem in our children should always be at the fore-front of any action we take, therefore despite pointing out behaviour we don’t like; we still want them to feel good about themselves.

There are four steps to encouraging co-operation; describe the offending behaviour, state the effect it has on you, tell them how you feel about that effect on you and ask them to help you with solving the problem.

When you behave congruently, your children will learn to do the same; it’s all in the style of communication. Book 11 also explores the hypnotic effect of language.

Book 11 – Challenging
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