There I said it. I’m one of those moms. I have too many kids and too much going on to just let them run around all willy-nilly and do whatever they want!
My kids have regular chores they are expected to complete every day. They get nothing for this accomplishment (other than free rent and food and clothes and transportation…) I explain to them that we are all part of a family and we have to work together to keep things running smoothly, and to keep mom in a good mood.
However, recently we started limiting electronics even more than usual and the kids were chomping at the bit asking what they could do to EARN electronics. This is when my genius plan was born.
5 Simple Rules for Mom’s Bribery Game
1. It is important to not let the little negotiators beat you at your own game. HOLD FIRM! I like to only do time for time deals. That way I am not put on the spot trying to come up with what’s “fair.”
Example: “For every minute you scratch my back, you may have one minute of gaming.”
2. Remember to change up the action and the reward. We don’t want them figuring out our game.
Example: “For every minute you let me nap, you may have one minute of TV watching.”
3. Silence is golden, as they say. Don’t underestimate how much a little peace and quiet can sooth your soul!
Example: “For every minute you don’t raise your voice above a level 2 (they will know the levels from school), you may have one minute to use my phone.”
4. Make sure you are making a sweet deal. If they start to think they are getting boring rewards, you have lost them and thus, the game.
Example: “For every minute you read your book, you may have one minute of doing math!”- This is not going to fly for most kids.
5. In this game, it’s ALL ABOUT MOM. So make sure you are getting the best end of the deal.
Example: Back scratches, massages, pedicures, manicures, sleeping in, an uninterrupted bath, and drinking coffee in silence are all great ideas to start with. Use these as a spring board to come up with things that will make YOU happy and relaxed!
Part of parenting is teaching our kids real world skills.
What is more “real world” than teaching that if you really want something you should work for it? So, throw all that guilt out the window and start bribing!