The Best Time to Talk About Chores!

I hope you enjoyed last week’s blog and were able to use the Cultivating Contributions Family Survey to start a discussion with your kids about their personal contribution desires. 

I wanted to check in with you and see how things went. Were there any surprises when you asked your kids about their contributions? It’s incredible what insights they can share!

One piece of advice I frequently offer parents is to address important requests with your kids outside of tense moments. When they refuse to pick up their toys, that’s not the ideal time for a comprehensive lesson on chores and responsibilities!

The best approach is to have the conversation after the situation has occurred, when both of you are calm. Or even better, have it before the situation arises at all!

This is vital because trying to address the issue in the heat of the moment only tends to make things worse. I’m sure you’ve experienced this firsthand too!

So, when it comes to asking your kids to pitch in with chores and contribute at home, here’s a tip: wait for a peaceful moment before initiating the discussion.

By casually approaching the topic without pressure, you create a more receptive environment. And that’s where the survey becomes useful—use it to explore the chores they would be most interested in.

Having these conversations can be challenging, especially if there has been tension surrounding the topic. Here are a few tips for discussing something difficult with your kids:

  1. Timing is key: Wait for a moment when your child is calm, well-fed, and open to conversation. Parents of children prone to meltdowns may hesitate to bring it up, fearing another outburst. However, I assure you that discussing it during a calm period, after seeking permission, usually won’t trigger another meltdown.
  2. Approach like a friend: Just as you would with a colleague or friend, ask your child in a way that respects their autonomy. Since our friends don’t have to do everything we say, we approach these conversations differently. Build on social capital by using phrases like, “Would you want to?” or “How might you want to?” Express gratitude and appreciation for their involvement.

By employing these strategies, you can navigate tough conversations with your kids more effectively and come up with ideas that work for both of you.

As we enter the summer season, take a moment to reflect on how and when your kids can contribute to the family. Use the survey I’ve shared to help them find ways that truly resonate with them, making them an integral part of the family unit.

I’m eager to hear about any surprises or insights your children revealed while taking the survey. It’s often not what we expect!

Keep cultivating those contributions, and have an incredible summer together!


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