There's not a person alive who hasn't doggedly tried to influence another person to act as they would wish. Wives, husbands...you know mothers take a class in nagging. It's secretly given in home-ec and Lamaze classes when no one is paying attention. I know I will have to give my woman card up after revealing that little fact. Since I didn't learn to be a real pain in the petooty in either way, and my mother is nowhere near the nag that I am, I am not sure where I learned this little tool of persuasion (or dissuasion depending on with whom you are dealing).
Perfect example: I have spent the better part of this summer "persuading" ad nasuem our Darling Daughter to assist with keeping our home tidy. At times, my kind reminding has brought about frustrated, teeth gritting, animalistic sounds from the girl child, which push that button in me that take me from kind reminder to full on head wiggling and phrases such as, "I KNOW YOU DID NOT JUST GROWL AT ME, LITTLE GIRL!"
To that end, Hubby Dearest swoops in and tries to make peace. This makes me even more mad because it feels like a gang up on the Mama moment. What do I do? I give up. Now HD is doing the friendly reminding. EVERY. SINGLE. DANG. DAY. Now HE is the nag and the girly doesn't growl at him...SHE JUST IGNORES HIS REQUESTS as if he never asked her to do a thing. With a little more volume and a lot less head wiggling, HD now understands my frustrations.
I'll definitely lose my privileges in the woman club for this, but here's the 4-1-1...NAGGING DOES NOT WORK!
Do you want to know why it is ineffective? Nagging makes your target feel picked-on, put-down, defensive, resentful, and disrespected. No one would be gracious or persuaded if this is how they were made to feel.
We tried a different tact last night. Both HD and I expressed how DD's lack of response makes us FEEL. I told her I felt like she had no respect for us or our home when our requests where ignored. I explained that it upset me because she wants us to give, give, give, and she wants to take, take, take, and eventually the coffers are depleted and there is no more to give. Her father agreed that that is how he felt as well.
Sticking with why we wanted her to assist with the house, we explained that we NEED her help because after long days at work, we just couldn't find the time to do chores, cook dinner, and have any kind of free time like going ice skating, something that she enjoys. We tried desperately to curb our "lecture" response and most importantly, the entire time we were talking, both HD and I were tidying up (loading dishes in the dishwasher, making dinner, etc.), teaching by example.
Furthermore, we gave a lot of time for DD to respond with how she was feeling. This is vital, naggers....FIND OUT WHY YOU ARE BEING IGNORED! Of course, DD's response to the question of WHY she was ignoring us was, "I just don't want to do chores...I like being lazy." This is where great self-control comes in because you CANNOT just react to that statement. Best advice, just stare at her like she said the dirtiest dirty word in the books. Eventually she continues to state, "That's not a good answer." DUH!
It's International Nagging Day. Will you treat this as an AWARENESS day where you try to curb your need to nag? Or do you have intentions to go on a full-scale, all-out nag-a-thon today? How do you operate? Share, share, share.