I overheard a woman today tell her young daughter,
“I’m not in the mood.”
And I’ve said it to my daughter of 9 months, too.
What does this mean?
My daughter is too young to understand this rebuff now, but will I catch myself saying it in a few years, when she wants to brush my hair, or get messy doing a project, or visit her favorite relative?
What is the gentlest, clearest, and most honest way to say no to a well-meaning child?
Have you heard, “I’m not in the mood?” and how did it make you feel? Where does it leave you and your unrequited desire?
Perhaps the best way to say no to a child is to suggest something else.
(“We can’t do that, but we can do this.”)
What do you think of the word, “but”?
“I’d love to, but…” Have you heard this? Doesn’t the second half of the sentence make you forget the “I’d love to” part?
Most of us find it very hard to say no. There was a time in my life where I needed to practice. So, I made myself flash cards.
LET ME THINK ABOUT IT
I’D LIKE TO, BUT…
IS THAT A GOOD IDEA?
Saying no causes some people so much stress, the Mayo Clinic web site actually has an article entitled “Stress Relief: When and How to Say No.”
Have you found a good way to gently say no, to adults or children, that leaves everybody feeling like a winner?