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  • Writer's pictureAlice Mia Joo

Achieve breakthrough with your child in 3 steps

Has it been taking a toll on your relationship with your child or children while working from home during the new pandemic era? Experts we spoke to have said that 'this' is not 'going away'. Here's a quick sharing on how we managed to switch the focus from 'being overwhelmed' to 'new opportunities'.


Just the other day, you were having a normal day working from home and suddenly, your girl got offended with something her sister did and started fighting with her. You were in the middle of a work meeting so you raised your voice to cut short the commotion. She heard you and fought even more, turning into a fury fist and her sister started screaming in tears. You ended up having to excuse yourself from your work due to a 'domestic emergency' and finally resolved the matter with some punishment. The tension continues for the rest of the day and the stress builds up.

Sounds familiar?

Another day, your boy pinched his sister because she was trying to remind him to do his homework. She comes running to you in tears, and the boy starts to cry as well. You tried to raise your voice again but to no avail. They started calling out on each other to get you on their side but you had to leave them to attend to an urgent work call. Finally, the crying subsided, and siblings stopped talking to each other for the rest of the day. By the time you were finished with your work, it was too exhausting to address the matter again. Maybe the next time it happens again, you will do something.

What should you do?

How do you help your child to overcome his or her emotions, and see that there is something they can do about it?

How do you raise your children to have good awareness and develop good problem-solving skills?

When will you ever start to have peaceful conversations and loving relationships at home instead of fighting, crying, and stressing it out?

I hope you find this sharing useful start to see your relationships improve in your family.

The next time your child reacts unexpectedly or undesirably, try coaching him or her to ask these 3 questions in sequence:

Question #1 - What Options do I have?

When children are growing, they are exposed to so many new things that they may get overwhelmed processing what each of the new experience means. School in general do not focus too much on how they could cope with the overflowing of information, so we as parents should coach them at home. Moreover, we know our child best.

Asking them this #1 question opens up their minds to possibilities and informs them that every event or experience they are being exposed to or go through is not absolute. This brings the ‘learning attitude’ from school to home.

Discuss and brainstorm with them - if they were to repeat the same incident again, how could they have acted it differently? Going through the same incident again helps them to practice awareness, and the process of trying to think of different ways to react helps them to develop the ‘think first, act later’ skill. A skill that even adults are guilty of and often leading to regrets after.

Children who are aware of their emotions and learns the ability to solve problems have less anxiety and tend to feel more confident over time.

Start with small simple matters, and slowly move to more complex ones. Be creative and learn to improve together with your child. This helps them to feel safer and confident having you by their side. It is a new way of using ‘copy-cat’ - to let your child copy you and learn the good behaviours.

Remember that good behaviours are mostly caught than taught, thus it always starts with us parents leading by example.

Question #2 - What is the Right Thing to do?

This question is closely tied to your values. What kind of values do you have at home and in your family that you wish to share with your child and ensure they remember them throughout their lives? This is the best opportunity for you to reiterate and reinforce to your children so that they know where is their anchor and use that as their source to have courage in making the right choices as determined by you.

In short, you are responsible for what your kids believe is the right thing. Take this opportunity to impart to them your values - this is your legacy for them, and their children.

"Legacy is about creating something valuable that lasts, and you get to decide what that is going to be for you."

Question #3 - What am I going to Do?

Once you have answers to Questions #1 and #2, it is time for your child to think about what he or she is going to do. This helps your child develop the skill of decision making with their logical mind – a skill that will last them a lifetime!

With options and values, together with good practice, our child should be able to identify the right options and make better choices over time.

"The key to solving problems is really asking the right questions."
– Alice Mia Joo, mother of a pair of twins

Remember that when it comes to developing skills and behaviours especially in children, it is most important to be consistent and disciplined.

Consistency breeds security for the child by having clear boundaries and guidance for the child to be empowered while feeling assured, and discipline nurtures courage and confidence to be humble and learn to focus on coaching themselves rather than blaming others.

We hope you find this useful, and may you start to see more respectful, understanding, and loving relationships develop in your family. Where there are love and trust, relationships can grow and flourish.

Leave us a comment if you have more ideas to share with all of us parents reading this.

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