My child is always dawdling, and I get so irritated by it

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girl looking at the sky in inflatable armchair
  • Keep your cool, stay calm: Explain “I have asked you twice, maybe you didn’t hear me so I need you to turn on your listening ears and put your toys away and go get you coat right now”

  • Explain the consequences: “If you don’t get your toys put away and get your coat your sister will be waiting for us wondering where we are, I wonder how that would feel?” or “If we are late you will miss your play time before school starts”

  • State step-by-step what you want your child to do: Be specific “Now it is time to get dressed, now it is time to brush our teeth”

  • Allow extra time: If your child takes longer to get going, build in extra time to your routine
  • Above all: Reflect on your own relationship with time. Are you anxious when you are late? Are you rarely on time yourself? Be aware of how you can role model good and respectful time-keeping so that your child can learn from and mirror you.