I am here to tell you – it WILL change your parenting world, once you understand the four temperaments!
Parent says, “I just made fresh cookies. They are on the kitchen counter. Don’t eat them. They are for lunches this week!” Without making certain each child hears and understands the rule:
The RED child hears and reacts, (Arguing) “Seriously? Did I hear that right? I don’t think this is fair. Why make us suffer? There are plenty of cookies to have some now and save some for later. No harm. I will take only one.”
The YELLOW child hears, “As soon as you are finished playing, you may have a cookie.”
The BLUE child hears and reacts, “Of course I will obey the rule and won’t eat them. I will make sure no one else eats them either.”
The GREEN child hears and reacts, “What? Did someone say something? Do I smell cookies? Oh look! Mom made us cookies!” (She’s wearing an innocent, sweet smile as she takes one.)
Sadly, our world is too noisy and busy for some children to hear and understand every command. So, a parent must be clear when explaining their rules. Then, if a child chooses to disobey, there should be a consequence. Consequences are necessary if you want behavior to change.
May I insert- simply having a child say, “I’m sorry” for disobeying a direction, does not correct a behavior. Saying “I’m sorry” is nice and mannerly, but it is NOT a consequence.
One of my granddaughters told me, “If all I have to do is say I’m sorry when I disobey, I will probably do it again- because saying, I’m sorry, is easy.”
This is how four of my granddaughters responded to this next potential command, “Clean your bedroom after dinner tonight, before you go to bed:”
(I promised I wouldn’t use their names, so their parents won’t know who said what!)
The RED child hears and thinks, “Really? I can argue this one. Why do I need to clean my bedroom? No one sees my bedroom. We aren’t having company. There is nothing in it for me, and I don’t think it is necessary. Besides, I’m sure mom will forget she asked me by bedtime.”
The YELLOW child hears and thinks, “I can plead my way out of this; because, it’s not fun. Besides, I can make mom think I’m really sorry I forgot. It works every time.”
The BLUE child remembers to clean his/her room. They like a clean room.”
The GREEN child considers it exhausting to clean her room. She is most tired at night. She assumes, “They’ll never suspect I forgot to clean it on purpose.”
WOW! Such HONEST responses. (And I have the best behaved grandchildren ever!)
When a parent gives a direction the child doesn’t like:
The RED child argues. He/She knows more than you.
The YELLOW child pouts or is extremely dramatic.
The BLUE child takes most things seriously, usually obeying.
The GREEN child sweetly and quietly does exactly what he/she wants to do.
Each child needs consistency from a parent. And, yes, that wears a parent down. Who said parenting was an easy job? Seriously, learning the temperaments, and how different children HEAR and REACT, will make your job a whole lot easier.
Subscribe to my blog www.kathleenchapman.com and get a FREE Temperament eBook and temperament test!
Another book on Temperaments I recommend is, The Real You, by Vicki Barnes.