It really can be this simple…
Whether you appreciate your Type 3 child or they wear you out (or both!) a few simple changes can make your relationship more balanced and cooperative all around.In this episode, Carol and Anne share two simple changes that can lead to big results for both you and your Type 3 child.
This Episode’s Parenting Practice
Pick one of the phrases from this episode that stands out to you. Start using it with your Type 3 child, and you’ll see better results, cooperation, and mutual appreciation starting today.
Transcript of podcast episode
Carol: Welcome to the Child Whisperer Podcast. I’m your host, Carol Tuttle, author of the bestselling parenting book, The Child Whisperer. I’m with my co-host, Anne Tuttle Brown. Do you have a Type 3 child? It seems to be in the Child Whispering world you actually have a position with them of, “I love my Type 3 child. They’re amazing.” Or you feel completely challenged and exhausted by them. We see both…
Anne: Is it fair to be both on a weekly basis?
Carol: Depends on the day, right? It could be hour to hour. Yet, if you will implement these two simple practices on a routine basis, that Type 3 child is going to stay more balanced, and cooperative, and so will you. I read the comments in The Child Whisperer Facebook group from parents that say how exhausted they are. You know, the thing that needs to be added to that is, “I’m so grateful my child’s living their truth.” Because I don’t think I exhausted my parents because they didn’t live my truth. The good news, if your Type 3 child can run you ragged a little bit, they’re living their energy, and they’re still growing into it. So, Anne, what is the primary need for a Type 3 child?
Anne: The Type 3 child is the determined child, and the primary need is to be challenged and have new experiences with the support of their parents. Their primary connection to the world is physical. And so, that is why they need to have new experiences. They dive into life.
Carol: They’ll create them if…
Anne: They grab it by the horns with the support of their parents. That’s the keyword. And that’s where you come in here. So, we are back to the basics with this podcast series of honoring that primary need. How do you do that as a parent of a Type 3 child? It can be as simple as changing the phrases you use with them. Instead of disciplining or chastising your child when they do something that seems thoughtless, help them learn from it so they can experience more success the next time. Instead of saying things like, “You never think things through.” Try this instead: “Tell me what you need to do to make that happen?” Or, “Do you really think that will work?” Or, “I’m excited for you, and I’m here to help.”
Carol: All children, all Types of children need boundaries, structure, and guidance is the key here. So, rather than reacting to what is a natural quality, and tendency in them, know it’s coming, and work with it. Be proactive so that there’s support, and there’s less discipline then, and there’s less reprimanding, and frustration on your part.
Anne: Well, this is the dance my Type 3 daughter and I play. I’m a Type 2, but I think that any Type of parent, like the Type 3 child is charge ahead. And I want to stop and say, “Wait.” Or block the path. So, this is the dance we do of her jumping into action and me coming in with these phrases like, “Have you thought about it yet? What is your plan? How are you going to move forward?” Like not wanting to cut her off at the pass, but make sure I’m checking in with her. For example, at the time of recording this, Chinese New Year’s just around the corner, and she got really excited. They must’ve talked about it at school because she came home and she was ready to throw a big party. My dad, her grandpa, who speaks Chinese, lived in Taiwan, has celebrated Chinese New Year, and she’s like, “I’m going to call Grandpa.” So, she starts calling him, “What are you doing?” She’s like, “I’m planning a party for Saturday, inviting everyone.” I was like, “Whoa. Hold on a second.” I hung the phone up, and I said, “Let’s talk about this. What do you want to do?” “I want to have a party.” “Okay, well, we’re having a family dinner already on Sunday. Why don’t we make that a Chinese New Year party? Let’s check in with Grandma, and see if that sounds good to everybody.” So, it came together. That happens so often. She will have an idea, and I’m like, “Whoa.” But actually, she moves things into action. There’ve been a lot of things where I’m like, “Good idea, Katie.” And she has this phrase that she’ll say, “See? Katie’s always right.”
Carol: How funny. She’s only seven, by the way, she’ll be eight soon. But I love what she was saying.
Anne: So, I honor her in those moments.
Carol: She kept saying, “Out with the old, in with the…”
Anne: Yes, she came home, she was ready to cut her hair. She’s like, “Out with the old, and in with the new. That’s what I always say.” She’s so determined. Another example, she wants to rearrange your room. And…
Carol: I did that a lot, too, by the way
Anne: A lot of Type 3s and this is a Type 1 tendency as well. But the way she moved through it was definitely that push forward. She got all these pictures out of the closet that were in her room just as storage, and started hanging them up with thumbtacks and a spoon, and like…
Carol: Like using the spoon to tap the…
Anne: Yeah, because she couldn’t find a hammer, and so she just resorted to a spoon.
Carol: Did she ask…
Anne: I didn’t want her to have a hammer. We were like, “No hammers.”
Carol: Did she do that without telling you she was going? Like, how did that play out?
Anne: Yeah. She started, and she said, “Mom, I’m rearranging my room. I need a hammer.” And I said, “What do you need a hammer for?” “I’m putting pictures up.” I said, “No hammer because that could go awry.” She came up with the spoon idea.
Carol: Do you think she should have asked you to hang the pictures up first?
Anne: I’ve given her liberty in her room. She knows like there are certain things that she can’t do. Like the pushpins were what we’ve talked about.
Carol: This fell within reason then that she could do it. So she didn’t have to come…
Anne: There are certain tapes she can’t use in her room because it will take the paint off.
Carol: You’ve covered that already with her then?
Carol: So, she was operating within your guidelines.
Anne: I mean putting up 10 pictures with… I was a little bit like, “How’s it…? Are they going to fall off? Is she going to make unnecessary holes in the wall?
Carol: She did a nice job. It ended up pretty good.
Anne: But in the end I was like, they’re teeny tiny holes, like, our walls will need patching at some point. Like whatever.
Carol: I saw you took that picture where she was sitting in the chair looking… Because that’s a very Type 3 tendency to take in your results.
Anne: Oh, yeah.
Carol: She was just taking all her effort.
Anne: She was so excited to show it off to everyone. I mean, like, if I can let her have the ownership, she’s more apt to now clean her room, and keep it tidy, and want to make it presentable.
Anne: Because she’s created something. Where if it felt like it wasn’t her space, she wouldn’t want to take care of it.
Carol: It’s interesting when people meet her they always reference, “She’s a big personality.” They reference her substantial energy because she’s in a family system that’s never condemned it, or criticized, or shamed it. We’ve always supported it, and you’ve always done a great job creating the guidelines, the boundaries, kind of that infrastructure that allows her to operate with it.
Anne: Yes, she has a very substantial energy moving in action, which can be exhausting as you’ve mentioned at the beginning. But I found that the exhaustion comes from trying to hold it back rather than…and I feel more supported, and more energized when I can direct it.
Carol: Good point. Right.
Anne: And help direct it. So, another phrase to help put…
Carol: Because you’re put…you’re having to come back here rather than, “Okay. This is here…”
Anne: I mean, imagine this is big ball of energy. If you’re trying to hold it and contain it…
Carol: It’s like stopping…
Anne: …that’s it’s going to be more exhausting than just kind of angling it in the right direction. And this takes practice and trust, but the more that you create this rapport of, “I’m…” this is another great phrase, “I’m excited for you. I’m here to help.” Before you start, “Have you thought of…” and go over the things. And it’s fair to stop their moving forward like, “Nope, I’m just going to do this,” because instead of that, “No, we’re going to talk about this. Sit on the couch. Let’s talk through this. Okay, now I’m going to support you moving forward.”
Carol: Rather than saying, “No, you’re not.” Right. You can help shift it to where it can be a modified version of it or come up with something else that will…
Anne: Or, it’s fair also to be like, “I don’t have the time to figure that out right now. You need to wait until this.”
Carol: Yeah, that’s fair.
Anne: But we’re putting this on hold.
Carol: But we’re going to look into it.
Anne: Not shutting it down completely.
Carol: Because what will happen—and I teach this in The Child Whisperer—they’ll avoid you, they’ll go around you, they’ll not involve you anymore. And by the time they’re a teen, they’re out doing their own thing. And they’re not really even… I remember I signed up to be a…I wanted to take the lifeguard training, and never even told my mother I wanted to do it because I didn’t want that…
Carol: I didn’t want her hesitation, and her being so concerned that maybe I shouldn’t do this. I literally signed for…I called, registered for it, and asked if she’d drive me to the training, first day’s training. I’m not sure how I got there each day because I couldn’t drive yet. I just would get her to drive me places. But I did involve her in the process. So, she really missed out in working with me and getting to know me because, by the time I was 12, I wasn’t referring to my parents anymore.
Anne: Well, and you missed out on feeling appreciated. And so, yeah, when you do this, and you support your child, they feel so appreciated, and excited, and they can do more things, and they’ll check in with you…
Carol: My mom’s case, instead of, kind of, knowing who I was, and applauding that, she would compare herself to me, and she’d be the lesser of the two, which wasn’t supportive either. You know, like, “I am so confident, and I just go after what I want.” And she’s the Type 2, it really was a very valuable time in our life when she understood the difference. When I was able to teach her about the 4 Types, and she embraced that.
Anne: That’s great. We’ve got more Child Whisperer coming up right after this brief message.
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Anne: Let’s move now to the primary movement, which is active and determined. Or active and reactive. And so, they pushed things into action to get a reaction, a result.
Carol: We tend to put a negative on that word reaction because we say when people react it’s a negative, but think of it as a…more of physics, and that when you put effort to something, something happens. It’s like you…
Anne: Things are in motion.
Carol: Things are in motion. So, we’re looking at it from that point of view rather than a negative point of view.
Anne: So, it’s pretty simple here. They love when you have a big reaction to what they’ve done, or said, or accomplished. And so, with all of their doings react in a positive, praise them big, substantially.
Carol: In fact, you might do that before the first suggestion like with the Chinese New Year party, say, “I love that you want to do these big things. Good for you. Now let’s talk about it.”
Anne: That’s great.
Carol: Because I know even from my current experience, my Type 2 husband if he gets in there first with kind of…
Anne: The concern in the question?
Carol: When there’s hesitation, he doesn’t respond with, you know, like, “That’s really great.” Awesome is the go-to word. Just use the word awesome. Just, that’s awesome. That’s awesome. That doesn’t mean you agree with it. They can do it. That just like, “You’re awesome. It’s great. Love your energy. Okay, let’s talk about this.”
Anne: Let’s sit down and talk about this. I love that. I’m going to implement that more. And then, when they’ve done something big, hoops, and hollers, and shouts and hoorays like, oh man, that’s how I potty trained. I didn’t want to go the route of, like, treats. And so, I was like, “We’re just going to make a big giant deal about this.”
Carol: She had a band on hand. Boom. Boom.
Anne: Oh man. It was like, “Give it all I got.” Like, we’d FaceTime people. We’d run around the house.
Carol: You could actually…
Anne: We’d stomp and cheer. We did.
Carol: …find a section of a song that just had a big percussion segment, and play it. That would work.
Anne: Moving around, running around, that works. That works a lot. Actually, she recently passed off her level one piano book, and I was like, “That’s awesome. Way to go.” And she’s like, “Can we run around the couch and celebrate?” I’m like, “Let’s do it.” So, back to the basics, just remember these primary needs, their primary movement.
Carol: It doesn’t mean you’re doing this 24/7. I mean, come on. You’re not like, I guess…
Anne: Well, the little bit goes a long way.
Carol: The little bit. Here and there. You know, you’re not in this state of being every moment with your Type 3 child, but you’re meeting them in the truth of who they are and supporting them. And it is easier. It’s honestly easier when you think if you have every Type of child in your family, like, “How am I ever going to accomplish this?” Because it’s small doses, and things run smoother. Children are more cooperative. You’re spending a lot less time disciplining. It takes less effort.
Anne: Your parenting practice today is to pick one of these phrases and start using it with your Type 3 child, and see better results, and more appreciation starting today.
Carol: Thanks for listening. For more support, go to thechildwhisperer.com where you can purchase the book, subscribe to our weekly parenting practice email, and find a transcription and audio of the Child Whisperer Podcast.
Anne: If you’re listening on iTunes, thank you for leaving a review. If you have a parenting question, please send it to [email protected].