“Don’t talk so much on the phone!”, “Don’t hit your brother!”… The life of the little ones is full of prohibitions, obviously for their own good. But sometimes, a break from “No!”s is beneficial for both the child and the parents. But also a day when “Yes” is the most frequent answer received by the child from the parents.
“Yes Day” is the subject of the book written by Amy Krouse Rosenthal and Tom Lichtenheld in 2009, which was made famous by actress Jennifer Garner in the movie of the same name. But the habit of not denying children anything for 24 hours has been recommended by parenting specialists and family therapists for a long time. The goal? To create a deeper connection between the little ones and the parents, but also to encourage positive interactions in a family.
Why refrain from saying “No”
The advantage of such a day not only gives the child the freedom of choice, that power he longs for every day, but also gives the parent a sense of liberation. These days, we try so hard to give our children a quality education, and we crowd their schedules with all kinds of classes to stimulate their intellect and develop their physical qualities. Therefore, it is also beneficial for us to take a break from so much organization and stress. The fact that we say “Yes” to what they want takes us out of our comfort zone, makes room for better collaboration between the young and the old, empowers the children and strengthens their personality. Such a day creates the ideal environment where the child can learn from his mistakes. And last but not least, it makes life more fun for everyone.
How Yes Day works
As you can imagine, such a day gives children the power to decide. Most of the time, little ones don’t even get to choose what they eat, do they? We, the parents, know better than them what caloric intake is beneficial for them and what healthy snacks ensure their optimal development. Well, on ‘Yes Day’, the little ones are in control! Why is this important? To learn first hand what is good to do and what is not. They will make decisions and sometimes fail in their attempt to do something, which is beneficial to them for the simple reason that they will see what they are good at and what they are not. However, parents may find that such a day is exhausting for them because of the stress they are under. What if something serious will happen?! What if the little ones are in danger?!
The rules of the day without rules
Total freedom can have consequences that no one wants, so it is recommended to establish some common sense rules from the start, so that everyone ends the day without anything bad happening. Thus, during the ‘Yes Day’, nothing dangerous should happen that would result in too much injury and scares. It is good to specify to the little ones that they will not do anything too far from home. How about proposing to visit Antarctica?! So you all stay within a few kilometers of the house, say a maximum of half an hour’s drive. Any proposed activity must not exceed the budget agreed by the parents. If something is bought, the whole family should benefit from that object and it should not be expensive. And, just as well, it is preferable not to propose anything for the future. Everything happens on that day, no plans are made for later, because after such a day you will still have to go back to the usual activity – parents at work and children at school, their holiday homework and responsibilities in home.
Benefits for young and old
The parents’ affirmative answer gives the children the confirmation that what they think, what they feel and what they propose is worth taking into account. And, when the child feels listened to, he will want to cooperate more in the future and will more easily obey the parents’ instructions. In other words, not only will you have a great time with your child, doing the funniest activities proposed by him, but you will have a stronger bond with your little one after a day when you stop saying “No!” ‟. As for the parents, mom and dad can take a well-deserved break from babysitting and keeping everything under control. No criticism, no bans, just fun – within normal parameters, that don’t put anyone in danger! – and affirmative answers!