Are You Using Santa to Manipulate Your Kids?
Christmas is an exciting time of year for kids …but can be an overwhelming one for adults if you allow yourself to get hooked into the stress. As the excitement increases for the kids, and the stress increases in direct proportion for the adults, I have seen and heard parents using the icons of the season (ie. Santa, Elf on the Shelf) in order to get their children to “behave.”
It seems the perfect opportunity to step out of the role of being the “bad guy” ourselves, and putting the emphasis and blame somewhere else. It takes the heat off of us for a change!!!
You’ll hear statements such as:
- You better behave or you’ll be on the naughty list.
- You better listen cause Santa is watching.
- You’re going to get a lump of coal in your stocking if you keep that up.
- I’m gonna get Santa on the phone if you don’t clean your room.
- ….or some other more creative renditions.
Though it may be a very effective method at the time, the hard truth is ….it’s a form of manipulation.
In employing this tactic you are getting your kids to respond to your needs AND you are teaching them to listen to something outside of themselves.
I can tell ya, they ain’t listening to you now because they have conjured up the love and compassion to respond to your needs from their heart. Nope. They are listening to you now out of fear. They are afraid of being judged, punished or having something taken away by someone/something outside of them. In this case, Santa.
I gotta tell you, I am a huge believer that life is meant to be fun, and we can take life way to seriously, BUT because having children grow always knowing themselves and who remain tapped into their intuitive selves is so important to me I couldn’t let this season slide by without briefly touching on this point.
I wanted to plant this as some food for thought as the number of sleeps before Santa comes continues to count down! I’d love to hear your thoughts on this.