How to go shopping with the family without the trip turning into a tragedy?
Do some scouting on the Internet, send dad to stand in line, plan a good snack when the shopping is done… Advice from Anaëlle Courau, family coach, for shopping (quietly) with your toddlers.
You might find it hard to believe us, but in order for you to last for the next ten years you need to know this: one day your offspring will beg you to take them shopping . Yes, yes, your daughter will wake up one morning with a mad desire to try on with you to find the outfit for her first date. Yes, yes, your son will ask you one evening if you can help him buy his very first suit. But there you go … for now, your kid is three, five, or seven and he really doesn’t care. So, to roam the shops without annoying your loustic, here is the advice of Anaëlle Courau , psychologist and family coach.
Choose your moment wisely. “ We avoid going there on weekends and prefer the morning,” suggests our specialist.
Make a list . “Whether it’s shopping or a shopping trip, it’s a bit the same . A list allows you not to get lost and to think upstream about what you are missing. ” If necessary, do not hesitate to first find what interests you on the internet, so all you have to do is try (and buy).
Recharge the batteries … for adults and children. “Remember to give the children something to eat and drink: if they are hungry , they will be more irritable and more tempted by whatever they see on the shelves.” A piece of advice that also works with mothers: if you are tempted by everything you see on the shelf, you risk paying for candy … so you might as well eat it too, right?
Empty the bladders ! “Take a trip to the bathroom to avoid surprises or inquiries in the middle of your shopping.” It would still be a shame if your little one’s urge to pee arrives just as you were about to enter the dressing room after thirty minutes of waiting …
Prepare your troops . “Explain to the children that they will not have the right to toys or sweets… This already helps to take stock.”
Don’t give in ! If your child has a whim, create a diversion and offer to help you choose between two products (two packets of cereal, for example). “This will not avoid the crisis today but surely the next ones.” You can also ask her her opinion on an item you like – “Would she be pretty Mum with that shirt on?” – but don’t be offended if he answers no. Yep, it unwittingly helps you save money.
Keep him busy . “ When they’re bored , kids get upset. We can therefore throw small challenges at them: the one who finds a particular product the fastest. It makes them active and they will appreciate it. ”
Take breaks . “It is possible to take a break between two shopping sessions to give the children a little play, but be careful, not too long or they risk being tired.”
Ask daddy for help . We’re not going to hide him, usually he’s just as annoyed as the kids at the idea of following you to the mall. So, so as not to find him half asleep in the spaghetti department, send him to the queue! You’ll save time (and maybe money, if he decides to give you that little cashmere sweater).
Praise your child … “If he has done well and has been very good, reward him with a little snack together” or plan an activity that will (really) appeal to the whole family.
… or not. “ If the races went badly, explain to the child that he will have to do better next time. You don’t necessarily need to punish him, but if so, try to find a grocery-related punishment (no new dessert at the next meal or in bed ten minutes earlier because he lost you ten minutes for your shopping , etc.) ”