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Reduce the Number of No's

When your baby begins crawling, everything she sees becomes an invitation to explore. As you baby-proof your home, first remove your treasured decorations. You will be able to return these items soon enough. Next, locate all remaining dangers. To be certain you find everything, get on her level and crawl around. Usually, parents and grandparents put temporary locks on cabinet doors and plugs into electrical outlets. Use the following ideas to prevent shocks:

  • When not in use, switch off appliances such as chargers.

  • Cover electrical outlets with plugs or push heavy furniture over the socket.

  • After baths, make sure your crawling or toddling baby is completely dry.

  • Keep liquids away from electrical items such as television sets, gaming consoles, and DVD players.

  • At night, turn off all electrical appliances to avoid fires.

Even if you feel a bit inconvenienced, do all you can to eliminate dangers. With thoughtful planning, you can usually assure a safe environment as well as one open to investigations. Since explorations stimulate learning, your goal will be to offer excitement within safe boundaries.

For dangerous items, you cannot remove or cover, think “firm” but not “angry.” These remaining dangers clearly become “no-nos.” Getting angry will not help babies understand and may cause unintended consequences. In fact, a constant dose of “no” ultimately creates resistance to the word.

When over-used, the word becomes almost meaningless. Use “no” only when needed in order to emphasize the importance. Never shout, slap, hit, or spank at any age. Lack of ability to understand your rationale will only confuse and cause emotional damage.

I have heard parents issue an almost constant stream of “nos.”

  • No, do not touch that.

  • No, stop moving so much.

  • No! No! Stop being so messy.

Automatically reduce the “nos” by eliminating as many dangers as possible.


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