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When you want your child to do something, ask or suggest politely rather than demanding impatiently. Ideally, do it with him/her. ("Okay, let's put your books up now. You take those and I'll take these," rather than, "Get those books off the floor now or I'm taking them away from you.") I've been doing this more and more and it works much better than I expected.
My son loves firefighters and after seeing the fire station and a video about firefighters, I had a brilliant idea: He always gave me a hard time when getting into his car seat / highchair. Now I pretend it's a fire engine and call it a "jump-seat". He will jump right in! He will even help with the straps! My daughter (1.5 years) loves this game too and will follow right along.
Pajamas can be the "fire protector suit", socks can be "firefighter boots", and coats are "firefighter jackets". Things go much faster around here!
New Jersey, USA
Just say yes
When my child is wanting to do or explore something, I make my automatic response a yes. That way, I'm "forced" to find a way to help her rather than squash her learning.
Attitude is everything
Sleepless nights are a lot easier to deal with if you are prepared for them. My son had slept long periods at night without any sleep training from the age of 12 weeks until he was 6 months. When he started waking again it came as a bit of a shock. If he'd been sleeping through surely he would again right? I spent the next three months stressed and tired because I was still of the opinion that he should be sleeping through. Eventually I changed my attitude and just learned to accept that responding to him waking through the night was part of my role as his parent. He didn't sleep any better after that but I did!
A child is a person
Think of your child as a person first, rather than as your child. How would you interact with a friend? How would you want someone to interact with you?
When my 10 and 8 year old were toddlers, I would always put them in the shopping cart and we would first head over to the floral department to touch the balloons. We never bought a balloon, but they knew each time we came, they would have the opportunity to see the new balloons and touch any that were out. Next we headed over to the aisle with children's books and toys. I let each child pick out one thing to play with in the store. We talked about how we are borrowing the toy and need to be very careful - they always were. Then we would start shopping. When we were finished shopping, we would return to the toy/book aisle and say "good-bye" to the toys or books. There was never any screaming or demands to buy the toys because they knew the next time we were shopping; they would have the chance to pick out another toy to borrow. I rarely had problems taking my children shopping. I think they felt that I respected their need to "shop" and it was a fun event.