Stall tactics… we’re all guilty of it. I know I certainly am – especially when it comes to cleaning. I love a clean house but hate to clean. I’m always finding other things to do instead of tackling the tasks I need to do.
Kids are the masters of stall tactics. Whether it’s doing chores, homework or going to bed… they are full of excuses which delay the inevitable.
Take my teenage daughter for example. She goes to college full time and works part time. She hangs out with friends on occasion and sees her boyfriend on Thursday afternoons and all day Saturday (when she’s not working). She uses these things as excuses as to why she can’t keep her room clean. She has laundry piled up on top of her dresser and clothes all over the floor and I have no idea what could be lurking under her bed. Whenever we ask her to clean the room she always finds some way to stall. Her usual reasons are she has homework or she’s too tired. Really? Right now, as I write this, she’s lying in her bed texting. She’s been up since 9:30 AM (EST) and she doesn’t leave for school today until 1:00 PM. Now is a perfect time to clean the room but I know if I insist she does she’ll say she has to take a shower, go to the gym, study, finish up homework or any other excuse she can come up with to stall having to clean the room. Ugh!
My kids are teenagers now so they know the consequences of not getting a good night’s sleep. We used to insist on a 10:00 PM bedtime (ideally 9:00 but once they hit high school that didn’t work anymore). I tell them at 10:00 I’d like the TV off, phones put away, music turned off and lights out. Usually this all happens (finally) around 11:00 PM. They employ the usual stall tactics… they are thirsty, they need to finish up homework, there is something good on TV they can’t miss, they are not tired, or the use this time to tell us about something that happened when they were at school/college and/or work – stuff that could have been told to us at the dinner table. Oh yeah! I forgot about the infamous “I need something signed for school” tactic where they take a half hour to find it. Ugh!
They have been fighting their bedtime since they were little. I even used a system my mom set in place for me which didn’t work.
My mom had a rule that for every minute past my bedtime that I was not in bed with the lights out I would have to go to bed 5 minutes earlier the following day. That meant if I was in bed 5 minutes after my bedtime I’d have to go to bed 25 minutes earlier the following night. I learned my lesson real quick when I ended up having to go to bed about 40 minutes earlier because I stalled the night before. Oddly enough, this method didn’t work with my kids. They would continue to stall even when they were forced to go to bed earlier.
One idea I recently learned of is letting you kids do something for 5 minutes and then after that it’s lights out no matter what. This could be reading a book or maybe even watching a few minutes of television. I know what you are thinking – how can you stop a child watching TV after five minutes. That’s easy – let them watch a 5 minute show. There are some to be found on Netflix.
Netflix and DreamWorks Animation launched Dinotrux 5 Minute Favorites, new episodes of the latest hit, all in a nice little 5-minute package.
I like the idea of 5 minutes of a fun television show then it’s lights out. Netflix has many other popular children’s shows and movies this could work with. Simply set up a timer and allow your child to watch only 5 minutes then the TV is turned off and it’s lights out. You can even sit and watch with your child to make sure the follow the rules.
I kind of like this idea because if it’s a show/movie your child really likes they will be anxious to get to bed just so they can watch five minutes of it. If I was a child and my mom did something like this with me I would look forward to bedtime just so I can watch a little bit of my favorite show/movie. This is an ingenious idea.
Netflix has so many great options like Disney favorites (the Disney Short Films Collection would be a great choice), Clone Wars, Penguins of Madagascar, Girl Meets World, King Julien, Popples, Callious, Super Why and Goosebumps – just to name a few.
Some new movies and shows are coming to Netflix which would make great options too.
For more information about Netflix, or to check out what films and shows they have to offer, visit Netflix.com. You can also check them out on social media.
What tactics do you use to prevent your kids from stalling when it comes to going to bed at night? Feel free to share your experiences in the comment section of this post with what worked, or didn’t work, for you.
How do you feel about letting a child watch 5 minutes of their favorite show/movie every night in order to encourage them to get to bed at a specific time? Would you try that with your child/grandchild? What movie/show do you think they would be excited to watch?
To see what ideas others have check out the hashtag #5MoreMinutes on social media.
*I was not compensated for this post. I receive a free membership and goodies in exchange for my participation. The opinions expressed are my own and not influenced in any way.