3 Questions To Empower Your Children

 / 

Questions To Empower Your Children

If you are thinking how to empower your children, then you’ve come to the right place. When it comes to their experiences at school or life in general, these 3 questions to empower your children can be really helpful. Let’s find out how to empower your children, and which questions to ask.

KEY POINTS

  • It takes away children’s power to tell them what to do or to belittle their challenges.
  • Asking them questions activates their inner power.
  • Ask, “What have you tried? How did it work? What else can you try?”

What’s the first thing you do when your child tells you about a problem? No one likes me; the teacher was mean to me; so-and-so shoved me; I failed a test….

Do you rush to tell your child what to do? Tell them they don’t really have a problem? Or tell them that it’s probably their fault? You have lots of friends; don’t take it personally; punch the kid back; walk away; tell your teacher; study harder….

Do your children take your great advice, run off to put it into action, then rush home to thank you? I didn’t think so. Ungrateful brats!

Related: How Parents Can Empower Their Daughters: 3 Keys To Self Empowerment

No, they aren’t ungrateful, and they aren’t being know-it-alls who reject your wisdom. They just can’t use your solutions, because they are yours. The best ideas come from within. And children certainly can’t use belittling or blaming to help them find a good path.

Instead of giving advice, you can ask three empowering questions.

3 Questions To Empower Your Children

3 Questions To Empower Your Children

These questions help children find their own solutions and find the power to put them into action.

1. What have you tried?

This question is empowering because children often feel helpless in the face of a problem. But just because they haven’t found a great solution doesn’t mean they haven’t made an effort.

And effort should always be celebrated. This question also keeps you from suggesting things that they have already tried.

Example: My former best friend started being mean to me. I tried ignoring her, I tried being extra nice, and I tried getting the other kids to be mean to her.

Advice and questions to empower your children

2. How did it work?

This question activates self-reflection. Finding an answer requires children to consider the impact of their actions without blaming or lecturing.

They may recognize that they actually had a good idea, but it just didn’t work perfectly. Or they might realize that their idea backfired, and it may be wise not to keep doing it.

A common answer to “What have you tried?” is “Nothing.” That’s OK. Still ask how it worked. Doing nothing is actually a strategy, and in some situations, it is the best strategy.

Example: Ignoring her and being nice to her made it worse. Getting the other kids to get her back got me into big trouble with the teacher. It isn’t fair!

Related: How To Help A Child With Stressful Experiences

3. What can you try next?

The last question empowers children to think creatively. It’s rare, of course, that the three questions will result instantly in a perfect idea. In fact, the most common answer to this question is, “I don’t know.”

That puts parents right back where they started, eager to provide the solution. But hold your horses! Even if your child asks you what to do, resist that urge.

You might give a silly answer, such as, “Call on the aliens to send their spaceships to carry the bullies away!” (But only do this if the child is open to humor and won’t feel belittled or teased by such a joke.)

The reason I like to give a ridiculous idea is that it allows the child to say, “That won’t work,” which they are dying to say about your ideas, no matter how good they are. Then you can say, “Oh, I guess that is kind of unrealistic. Do you have any ideas?”

One reason children are reluctant to give their ideas is they have had their ideas dismissed or discounted so often. So be sure you are really ready to listen, not waiting to tell them, “That won’t work.”

Example: I guess I could try ignoring her again. When I tried it before I didn’t give it much time because she just made me so mad. But I think I could ignore her better now. And there’s this new girl in school who I think could be a good friend.

Questions to empower your children

Roleplay

Sometimes it helps to play out an idea in fantasy before trying it out for real. This kind of test drive can help a child see that a good idea might work, or see that a rotten idea might not work.

Be sure not to push too hard in shaping the results of the roleplay. Let the drama unfold naturally, and the child will develop a deeper understanding of the problem and possible solutions.

Example: Parent says, “Do you want to act it out? I’ll be the ex-friend. Oh, look at her. I can’t believe I used to be her friend—ugh.” Parent exaggerates to make it a bit lighter, and makes sure it isn’t hitting too close to home.

Child walks by with chin up, confidently. Parent sticks out her tongue, child laughs, and they wrestle, giggling. Then parent says, “I’ll be the new girl. Hey, you look very nice, would you like to be my friend?”

Related: 49 Phrases To Calm An Anxious Child

Oh, the Irony

Yes, I recognize that I am giving you advice not to give advice! Let’s start over. When your child comes to you with a problem, or you discover a problem they’ve been hiding, what have you tried? How did it work? What might you try next?

Sign up for Lawrence J. Cohen’s newsletter by emailing “subscribe” to newsletter@playfulparenting.com.


Written By Lawrence J. Cohen
Originally Appeared On Psychology Today
how to empower your children

— Share —

— About the Author —

Leave a Reply



Up Next

Eggshell Parenting Meaning: 5 Signs You’re Making These Mistakes!

Eggshell Parenting: Signs You're Making These Mistakes!

Parenting is one of the most sincere tasks in every individual’s life that should be done with utmost care and coherence. However, the relationship between parents and their children is often tampered by the mental, and behavioral issues of the parents.

Thus, mood disorders and the violent nature of parents can affect the child’s life. Eggshell parenting is one such consequence. In this blog, we will guide you to understand eggshell parenting and show you the risky spots you should avoid.

What is Eggshell Parenting?  



Up Next

The Role of Childhood Trauma in Serial Killers: A Deep Dive Into 5 Serial Killers and Their Upbringing

Role of Childhood Trauma in Serial Killers: Case Examples

The public’s fascination with the mystery surrounding serial killers has long sparked conjecture regarding the motivations behind people’s horrific behavior. The role of childhood trauma in serial killers has received a lot of attention, despite the fact that the reasons underlying their actions are complex.

In this blog, we explore the childhood experiences in serial killers to gain insight into their terrifying world. We aim to uncover the intricate relationship between pathology and upbringing by delving into the trauma in serial killers and unfavorable conditions that shaped these individuals’ early years.

This will illuminate the shadowy pasts of some of the most infamous murderers in history. Come along with us as we venture into the darkest recesses of the human brain, where the roots of violence are planted.



Up Next

7 Helpful Benefits Of Inclusive Parenting: Here’s What You Need To Know!

Helpful Benefits Of Inclusive Parenting You Should Know!

Do you want to create a bias-free environment for your kids? Learning about what is inclusive parenting and the benefits of inclusive parenting will help you to reach your desired goal of an inclusive and prejudice-free home for kids. 

In this day and age, being a parent means more than just providing the basic needs of your child. It means creating an atmosphere where differences are embraced and every kid feels like they belong.

Inclusive parenting supersedes traditional models of the family by insisting that all children should grow up in loving environments that nurture their unique talents regardless of race, ability, or gender identity.

This article will give an overview of wha



Up Next

7 Words Every Struggling Adult Child Needs To Hear From Their Parents

What Every Adult Child Needs To Hear: Important Phrases

When we go through the process of maturing, there will be times when it feels like we can’t shoulder the burden of our duties. Here are some words that every adult child needs to hear, when everything seems overwhelming.

Even impossible at times; and in these moments what matters most is not advice or encouragement but simply understanding – validation for how hard things really are.

The problems you’re facing aren’t your fault alone – many people share them too! Feeling confused about which way to turn or like there’s too much on your plate is completely normal.

And the journey of being a parent doesn’t change or end when children become adults. Instead, it evolves into a phase where one can serve as mentors, friends, and supporters.

So, t



Up Next

Identify When Your Kid Needs You The Most With The 9-Minute Theory

Nine Minute Theory: Most Important Minutes Of Your Child

Are you a parent who wants to build a better relationship with your children? Then welcome to the Nine Minute Theory. This game-changer in parenting has been making waves among moms and dads everywhere.

Sara Martinez, a mother of a toddler, scrolls through TikTok looking for advice. Out of all the comments flooding her screen, one catches her eye – the 9 Minute Theory.

She does some digging and what she finds not only brings her closer to her 19-month-old daughter Millie but also relieves some of her ‘mom guilt.’

So What Is The Nine Minute Theory?



Up Next

8 Signs of Poor Parenting That Has A Negative Impact On Kids

Signs of Poor Parenting That Has A Negative Impact On Kids

Let’s talk about something important today: the signs of poor parenting that can have a serious impact on your little ones. We all strive to be the best parents we can be, but let’s face it, we’re only human.

Sometimes, you might unknowingly engage in certain behaviors and habits that can potentially harm your child in the long run. But, don’t worry, this isn’t about pointing fingers or making you feel guilty. Instead, we hope this article will serve as an opportunity for self-reflection, growth and finding ways to become even better parents.

So, grab a cup of coffee and join us as we explore these signs together. Remember, that being a parent and raising kids is not an easy job, and by recognizing these signs you can work towards creating a more loving and nurturing environment for them.

First, let’s t



Up Next

10 Helpful Benefits Of Reading Aloud to Your Child!

Helpful Benefits Of Reading Aloud to Your Child!

It’s no surprise if you often overlook the necessity and the benefits of reading aloud to your children in our hectic schedules. Understanding why is it important to read to your child is crucial to bridge this gap. 

This way it helps in so many interesting ways that can help a child to learn and grow.

This is why we are here to show you how awesome the benefits of reading aloud to your child are and give some tips on making it an extraordinary part of your family time.

Get set because we are going to discover why reading books out loud is like a superpower for kids. We will touch on some benefits of reading as a child, understand feelings better, and perform excellently in education.

Therefore take your favorite book cuddle up with your littlest