The Question That’s Helped with Listening


That is the new question that I’ve been saying A LOT lately to my son. It beats the before. Envision this…

We are getting ready to leave the house and all the chaos that brings. I ask my son to go get his shoes and put them on please – normal voice. He proceeds to do anything but getting his shoes, so I ask again – normal voice. He continues to not get his shoes. I ask again – louder. He starts whining; he can’t do it and falls to the floor because this is impossible. I feel the anger bubble boiling inside of me – which I’ve labeled the Mommy Monster – starting the third time I had to ask and I try so hard to keep it in, but this continues on for a while until it can’t be contained. Then. Watch. Out. The Mommy Monster boils over and there’s yelling for him to get his shoes and get them on now. Sound familiar?

I don’t like Mommy Monster – she’s not pretty.

So what did I do about it? Well, one day, while Mommy Monster came out – yet again – I realized after the incident that I didn’t want to keep doing that anymore. It wasn’t getting him to get his shoes – or do any task – any faster; and it always ended with him, and usually me, in tears. Enough was enough.

This is where my new question to him comes in. Whenever I ask him to do something and he doesn’t do it – I ask again. I also always use please at the end because we expect him to do that, so I need to as well. I digress.

We get to the third time and that’s when I ask the question: “What am I asking you to do?” It’s in a normal, calm voice. Usually, that leads to him repeating what I was asking followed by him doing it.

Now, there are days this does not go as smoothly as I just indicated. It’s a work in progress. However, when he isn’t able to say what I’m asking, I ask him what he did hear. Then we go from there. Sometimes I repeat what I asked and then ask him to repeat it right away. I don’t have an exact way it works, but I will say Mommy Monster comes out A LOT less and he is doing MUCH better listening and being able to repeat what I asked.

What tips do you have to get your kids to listen and do what you ask of them?

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I have three jobs I thoroughly enjoy. First, I am a wife to my best friend and partner in crime, James. Second, I get to be a Mom to two super handsome boys, Logan and Ethan. And finally, I am an eLearning consultant, to which I'm grateful to have found my professional passion. We live in Fairborn and it wasn't until we had our first son that we really started exploring Dayton. We have discovered many fun things to do and see; it's been great having those experiences so close! In my spare time, I enjoy doing projects around the house, baking, traveling, hanging out with family and friends, and binge watching TV.


  1. What a great idea! My mommy monster is not the most pleasant either! I will definitely try this out!

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