Shamelessly Wielding, "Because I Said So"
Probably the most important principle in my work as a nanny is that children deserve the same amount of respect as adults. But that doesn't mean they should hold the same amount of power.
We're in charge for a long list of good reasons. And sometimes it's enough to answer (the millionth) "why?" with, "because I said so."
To me, showing kids respect means giving age appropriate choices, inviting kids' ideas, following their lead whenever possible and giving advance notice about what's happening in their day. And yes, often it means explaining the rationale behind our choices. When we do we model decision making skills.
Yet, as adults we have a bigger perspective than kids. Sometimes our rationale is too complex for a child to understand - so we ought not give it. Sometimes what's needed more than an explanation is quiet. And that's okay.
When we do say, "because I said so" we're asking kids to trust that we have their best interest at heart. And we're reassuring them that we are confident leaders.
But here's the trick: Tone of voice. Like so many other times, when we say, "because I said so" it's the tone of our voice that will communicate our intent. Our tone's got to be warm and confident.
P.S. The second tricky trick is getting ourselves from feeling annoyed to feeling warm and confident. More on that in coming weeks...