bored looking flower girls
When faced with a disgruntled child who doesn’t want to take part in a family activity we have planned for them, we are often tempted to dress it up and make the activity sound more exciting than it actually is. Great for us because then they will want to do the said activity as they will be more willing and looking forward to it. However, when the child actually does the activity or realises what it is they may feel disappointed and not as exciting as we made it out to be. They may put their foot down and refuse to do the activity and kick up a stink. This is because we did not manage the children’s expectations correctly.

So, how do we get our children to accept what we are going to do with them without the moaning? Should we dress up the activtty or just be realistic about what we are going to do?

Tips To Help Manage Children’s Expectations

  1. We need to remain authoritative and explain that we are going to do the activity and explain where it is, what it is and how long we are going to be doing it for.
  2. We can listen to what it is that they are not happy about and see if we can incorporate their wants into the activity, if at all possible. Can we do a bit of negotiation with them?
  3. We can explain that they have a choice in terms of how they approach the activity and isn’t helpful being negative and unhappy.
  4. We need to make sure their expectations are realistic. The activity will be fun if they get involved and it will be what they make it. It may be something new but new can be good.
  5. Ignore the moaning and get on with it. Once you are active and doing what you planned they will have probably have forgotten what they were moaning about and relax into it.

How do you manage your child’s expectations? Let me know in the comments.