“Defiance isn’t a discipline problem, it’s a relationship problem.” – Laura Markham

Let that sink in for a minute…

Yes, sometimes our kids just don’t want to brush their teeth or empty the dishwasher. 

That’s not what I’m talking about. I’m talking about the ‘I don’t care- You can’t make me- I hate you- Every little thing is a battle.’

We can try to make our kids cooperate with threats, yelling and punishment, but true cooperation comes when they WANT to cooperate. 

When our kids feel close and connected to us, they care what we think. When they care what we think, they want to cooperate with us. 

Think about people in your life that you’d go the extra mile for. Is it because you’re afraid of them or is it because you care about them and respect them?

True influence comes from connection. 

If our child is lashing out, it’s because they are feeling disconnected and unloved. So if your child is being defiant on the regular, drop your agenda and work on your relationship. 

This can be hard if you’ve gotten into a bad pattern of demanding and defiance and fighting.

Stop and think about how you want your relationship to feel.

What could you do to move in THAT direction? What could you do if you were motivated by love rather than control? What would you do if you could let go of the anger and resentment and act from a place of trying to connect? 

It only takes one person changing to completely transform a relationship. And since we’re the grown up, that person is us.

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