Our first child was extremely strong willed and the rest were just normal strong-willed, which means very strong-willed.
I also talked to our Christian doctor about my daughter. I was ready to put her on medication to help me keep my own sanity.
A Problem With Self Control and Impulsiveness
He said to deal with it firmly and consistently and with salvation, you will see a change. My daughter did not get saved until she was 7 (which is a lot of years to deal with!). God is amazing! Keep praying for your child’s heart and your patience. It is worth it!
Her longest time to focus on a project that she liked was 6 minutes. So every time she did focus on something for 7 minutes, we rewarded her.
Yep, that’s right.
I lived a lot of that time in 6 and 7 minute time blocks.
She would focus on puzzles so we bought puzzles. Lots of them! And we would work and work on getting her to lengthen her focus, one minute at a time.
I am so thankful for God’s work on her heart and on my patience!
Do you need help parenting your strong willed child?
I was a strong willed child. My mom reminds me of this sometimes! That is good because if I hadn’t been stubborn or persistent or tenacious or whatever you want to call it, my own daughter would have run over me again and again.
Or perhaps I would have let my daughter get away with bad behavior if I had not been so determined. My daughter needed to learn some lessons: to obey, to persist, to follow through. Importantly, teaching obedience now provided safety and set an important foundation for future self-control.