Can’t get your kids to help out at home? Here’s how to do it! Transcript

Please note: Transcripts for the No Guilt Mom Podcast were created using AI. As a result, there may be some minor errors.

JoAnn Crohn: Welcome to the no guilt mom podcast. I’m your host, JoAnn Crohn joined here by the amazing Brie Tucker.

Brie Tucker: Hello. Hello, everybody. How are you? I need to do more, more reciprocation on this. And here is the, uh, phenomenal, I like the word phenomenal, phenomenal, JoAnn Crohn. Ba ba ba ba ba ba ba ba ba.

JoAnn Crohn: You got to celebrate it. You got to celebrate

Brie Tucker: that’s your like,

JoAnn Crohn: Just shake the shoulders.

Brie Tucker: that’s like you’re running down to the uh, to the Price is Right music. Ba ba da da da!

Yay! We all need that. We need more of that in our daily lives, I think.

JoAnn Crohn: We do. We need to accept the celebration. I would never forget when I, was in high school. I was from April and she gave me a compliment and I told her all the reasons why I didn’t deserve that compliment, which is very typical, very typical of people. And you just have to take the compliment and say, thank you.

Thank you. Because I mean, that’s so

Brie Tucker: I work on

JoAnn Crohn: this conversation a lot. We work at it a

Brie Tucker: I work on this. Like, you gave me a compliment yesterday, and I started to

JoAnn Crohn: when you’re

Brie Tucker: and I had to stop myself, and I’m like, thank you very much for that. genuinely appreciate it.

JoAnn Crohn: it’s good for mental health too. Because if we don’t acknowledge those wins, we only see the bad. So we really have to stop and say thank you and let it sink in and be like, I am lovely. Thank

Brie Tucker: Yes.

JoAnn Crohn: And then go on from there. and we’re going to give you something else to celebrate today because one of the frequent things we hear from you no guilt moms is that you can’t get your kids to help out.

Hands up in the car. Raise them like you just don’t care. If your kids don’t help out around the house. Oh, yeah

Brie Tucker: all on me. Whoop. Whoop.

JoAnn Crohn: It’s all of me.

Brie Tucker: here. Everything would fall apart. Do you feel like

JoAnn Crohn: Everything would fall apart. Yes. It’s a horrible mindset to get in It’s incredibly stressful when you feel like everything is on you. And so in this episode we are going to Tackle that we’re gonna look at the reasons behind it as well as actually getting that off your shoulders So we hope you enjoy this episode.

Let’s get on with the show. . If you’re doing all of your household tasks right now, and by the way, we actually have something to help you with this, , at balanceformoms. com. You probably think you’re at a five right now in your house and we want to tell you, you’re probably a 12th. I’ll prove it to you because you’re going to go get this at Balance for Moms.

Like do this even before you listen to the rest of the episode, balanceformoms. com, home responsibility calculator. It’s just like boxes you check off of what you do, your partner does, and your kids do. And then you’re going to go into this episode knowing, Oh my gosh, I do like 89 percent of the work in my house.

Or, Oh my gosh, I do like 75%. It’s a lot. It’s shocking.

Brie Tucker: I think so. Let me just say this. Like, I think it helps as someone that, and you’ve seen this happen to me all the time. When I get asked on the fly. What I’m doing. I get a deer in headlights

because all that I can think of in my head is, Oh my God, this person is judging me. They think I do nothing and okay.

Maybe sometimes that is what someone is thinking, but I feel like most of the time the other person is genuinely trying to figure things out, but I can’t get out of my head on that moment. So that’s why, like, I love that checklist. Because it puts it out there on paper and it’s like, oh, yeah, or even if like you, you do come up with it and you’re like, okay, I do five things and you don’t realize that you actually do 205 things.

JoAnn Crohn: Yes. Yes. It’s a really good baseline. It’ll give you something that, you know, like, oh my gosh, like I am not delegating. I am doing everything myself. But let’s get into why that might be happening a bit. Like, how did we get here? How did we do all these household activities? We mentioned in an earlier episode about this Instagram reel we saw.

And I talk a lot about that parent conversation. I heard my parents have where my mom was like, why can’t you help me around around the house? My dad says. Just tell me what to do and I’ll do it. And my mom’s like, why do I always have to tell you what to do? And I think that we think that it’s easier just doing it by ourselves instead of engaging in that conversation about what tasks to do.

Brie Tucker: It also can be exhausting when you have tried 15 different ways to fix the problem, right? And the, and let’s, and just to be clear, the problem is you feel like nobody else in your family is consistently helping out unless you nag them, scream at them, or just. Do it yourself. That’s the only way stuff gets done

JoAnn Crohn: Mm hmm.

Brie Tucker: we’ve tried everything and you’ve you probably have tried like a million Everything’s you’ve tried the checklist.

You’ve tried the chore list. You’ve tried the family meeting you’ve tried Talking to people you’ve tried like bribing them with money like you’ve tried everything but nothing’s worked and there’s a reason

JoAnn Crohn: And it’s not your fault either that nothing’s worked. All those systems are flawed. They’re totally flawed. They will,

Brie Tucker: yeah certain things. Yeah I

JoAnn Crohn: And why should you have all this responsibility? If it is everybody’s house, like you have been sold a bad. a bad product when it says like the chore lists and the checklists and everything.

Like it is not your fault. Um, and what we’re suggesting is we are suggesting more of a team approach where it becomes everybody’s responsibility and not just mom’s. And part of that starts with. Knowing that good self care is good parenting. So taking care of yourself first and then going into this way of working together as a team, where actually your entire family.

Thinks of the chores together. You have an equal distribution, or if not equal, a distribution that you’re happy with between you and your partner living in the home. Or if you’re a single parent, you have something where you’re getting help in the home, uh, so that it doesn’t all rely on you because it’s You don’t deserve that.

You don’t deserve it. And we’re going to get exactly in to how to do that right after this break.

So when you’re thinking about everything that you have to do in the house, The first part is, is that you shouldn’t be thinking it alone. It is not just your house. It is everybody’s house. Like that’s really what we want everybody to do. We want them to take ownership of the tasks there. We want everybody to see if something is laying on the floor, they have to be just as equally invested in picking it up as you are.

Now there’s a little caveat there. Because kids will not be equally invested as you are, like, it just won’t

Brie Tucker: They don’t like we have an episode with, Ned Johnson where he talks about this and he talks about how the stress level or the pain point for parents is that a much lower threshold than it is for kids. So, we tend to get upset and worked up When something isn’t done or when something’s messy because our threshold is a five, but for our kids, their threshold is a 10.

And so then we think that they don’t even care, which they care. They’re just not at the same level of care as us yet.

JoAnn Crohn: Yeah. They’re not ready to do something about it yet. Like when my daughter leaves her heavy backpack right in the middle of the kitchen floor and all of us have to walk around it and she doesn’t realize she has to move it. she’s just not at that level yet, where it’s affecting her as much as it’s affecting us.

Cause she sees it, she’s like, oh, I’ll just walk around it, it’s fine. Where we’re like, we just have to walk around it! Like, fine! So, when you’re sitting down and you’re thinking of these, it’s best to do it as a family. have… everyone there to talk about it. And the best way to do that, I think, is just a brainstorming brain dump. Like, let’s talk about what needs to be done in this house and you’ll contribute some things. And the surprising thing is everyone else will contribute things that you had no idea were being taken care of.

None. I had that happen in my house. I had no idea. my husband was thinking of certain things that he needed to do. especially the stuff that only gets done like on the weekend, like those, that stuff, he does on his own. I have more of the daily routine tasks cause I am home with the kids and those daily routine tasks drive me crazy.

And because I have those daily routine tasks, and this is me going a little further on, but this is something to think about, No Guilt Moms, because you have so many daily routine tasks, why not put some more tasks on your partner outside of that, that you don’t have to take care of? okay, so here’s an example. I am really rushing around all the time in my house during the weekday. I’m All the time because the kids need driving someplace like just this afternoon, I’m going to be playing taxi to my daughter who has to be picked up from school. she has to be brought home so she can change and then she has to go right back an hour later for her call time because it’s a theater production tonight.

Or I’m like, taking them to dentist appointments. I just checked into dentist appointments during the week where I log, my, take my whole computer with me. I pack it in my bag. I do work from there and I’m like, going from thing to thing to thing. All week. And so during the weekend, it’s like, Joe, peace out.

I step back from being that taxi driver all the time. Like it is not I take a backseat backseat taxi driver, but I will specifically be like, Hey, can you take them? Hey, can you take them? And then my husband is like, I’ll take them. I’m good. I’ll do that. So it’s one of those things. Like if you are stuck with this.

Responsibility that falls in the daily routine because you are home. I’m realizing now it’s better just to accept that chain of events, but then to offload things where that you don’t have to do so that you get that space and that recovery time and that feeling that you are equally supported in the home.

Brie Tucker: right. And I love the fact too that you both have a job. You both work. you are willing to take on the stuff that fits into your schedule better because of literally where you work. So like you’re willing to take on the driving during the week because you work from home and you can do that. you’re closer to where the kids need to go.

We’ll just say it that way by proximity. You are the go to person,

JoAnn Crohn: I’m the boss, who’s going to tell me what to

Brie Tucker: yes, but also on the weekends then when you’re both home From the work week that you both had It is perfectly acceptable and fine to be like, Hey, I took this load, this shift during the week. It’s your shift over the weekend. but it doesn’t have to be said that way. It could be said more like, you know, I feel like I’m taking the shift during the week. How about you split it and you take it over the weekend? How does that sound?

JoAnn Crohn: Yeah. And the conversation that we had is I’m like, I am so tired of playing taxi driver. Can you please take over the taxi driver stuff the weekend? And he’s like, yeah, totally. I like driving. I’m like, cool.

Brie Tucker: Most, yeah, most of the time, we do enjoy it at certain times. so I like this for a lot of reasons. This whole idea of, sitting down with everybody. So, the first idea is that, you sit down with everybody and, brain dump together as a family. And the reason I like it also is because when we are really stressed out, because The backpack keeps getting left in the middle of the floor In that moment when the backpack’s in the middle of the floor and I am angry about it Because my stress level is already at its max And it hasn’t gotten to the max level for my kids.

I may not be communicating that in the most clear, thoughtful, kind, how about respectful way. I might be more of like, GET THIS SPINNOW, I ALMOST FELL AND BROKE MY NECK, I don’t know, like, whatever, right? That’s me. I’m dramatic. I’m dramatic,

JoAnn Crohn: It happens,

Brie Tucker: if I’m right, but if I’m having this conversation say during dinner, like, Hey guys, we’re going to talk about what needs to be done in the house because it’s driving me bonkers and I don’t like being cranky and y’all don’t like me being cranky.

Let’s come up with a solution. It’s going to work. Then I can say at that time, you know, one thing that really bugs me is when we leave our stuff in the middle of the floor. And, and they can hear me say it in a calm, rational manner, where they don’t feel like they’re having to defend themselves, and we’ll figure out from there what has to happen next, whether or not it’s something that has to be fixed or not fixed, but I mean, You’re able to have that conversation without all the emotional blowout that can happen.

JoAnn Crohn: Yeah, exactly. And it goes back to something that our friend Hunter Clark Field said in her book, Raising Good Humans, is that whose problem is it? Whose problem is it when things are a mess? Whose problem was it when things are on the floor? And the answer is actually really surprising because it’s not your kid’s problem.

Your kids could care less. Like they really could. They could care less. It is your problem. And what that does, it doesn’t mean that you have to pick up the stuff, but it Will change how you communicate about it Because so much of our thinking is like, you know, get this off the floor. Don’t you want a clean house?

The kids are like no, it’s fine When really if it’s our problem coming to it and owning it and being like hey when i’m trying to cook dinner I’m constantly tripping over this backpack on the floor. It is a real problem for me. Can you help me? With this, it’s taken a lot differently by our kids at that point.

Brie Tucker: what you did in that thing. you explained it. And that’s a big thing that they need. I, I know, like, with my kids, we have a rule in our house. their space is their space. And I know that that’s not probably a popular opinion for everybody, but I know you and I are kind of the same on this.

Like your space is your space. I’m not going to nag you about cleaning your room. I only have a couple of basic rules. No food, no drink in your room overnight because I don’t want bugs in there. All right. And let’s all, and like, and we talked about it, you agree you don’t want roaches in your room either.

Okay. So we all agreed we don’t do that. No, great. Is that could fall all the time? No, but pretty good. And my second thing is like, I don’t care how messy your floor is. I just want a clear path from your bed to the door. If the house were to catch on fire, like

JoAnn Crohn: yeah, basic safety, basic safety.

Brie Tucker: the breezy anxiety just needs to know that if there were a fire, you could get out of your room.

And both of my kids are okay with that. and one of them literally takes me to that word. there is just a small path from that person’s bed to the door. That is it.

JoAnn Crohn: and that is it. Exactly. And so once you have this list of things that need to be taken care of in the house, there is. Another step you need to take and a lot of people skip over the little fine details that actually make delegation work and we’re going to dig into it right after this break.

So those little fine details about tasks, it is usually skipped over in our houses and honestly, it’s actually skipped over in the work world as well because when we don’t have clear expectations in our own mind about what classifies a task is being done and we don’t communicate those expectations to other people.

we’re gonna be unhappy, completely unhappy. So the thing we have to establish is there’s actually like three points. There’s who’s doing it, what needs to be done, and here’s the kicker, when it needs to be done by. Because we frequently stop At the who and what in the house, but we don’t talk about the when and we don’t give the task a deadline So if we’re telling our kids, oh you need to clean up after dinner and we don’t say oh, it’s by a certain time Anytime that night is after dinner.

So I mean and teenagers in particular are going to be the ones who will poke holes So much in your expectations like they will find out where you are not

Brie Tucker: say, yeah,

JoAnn Crohn: Yes They’re like the best for training you on this. Yeah.

Brie Tucker: Oh my God. Yes. Like I, I 100 percent agree. , so like we’ve had this system in our house for a while where like everybody, we, we have the brain dump. Everybody takes a turn picking some items off the list of things that need to happen in terms of like chores.

but this one is the one that would trip us up the most because I thought I was crystal clear. if your chore is to vacuum, you have to vacuum. Before you leave the house to go to your dad’s next week. Like that’s, that’s how our house works. But my idea of when that had to happen and their idea was totally different.

And then I was like, okay, fine. We figured this out. It needs to happen on Thursday, right? Well, then what would happen is Thursday, like again, dinner time comes and the chores aren’t done. And then I’m pissed off. And I’m , and nagging at dinnertime, like, why didn’t you do your chore? It’s still Thursday.

And I’m like,

What are you going to do at 10 o’clock at night? Well, maybe. Why? Can I not? I’m like, so then I have to like, explain! Right? as an adult, you’re like, well, yeah, I to do it at 10 o’clock at night because I’m trying to sleep. We live in a condo. Our neighbor’s trying to sleep. Like, that’s not an appropriate time.

But those thoughts never even popped in their head. Not at all.

JoAnn Crohn: Never. At all. Like we have the same thing with dishes. my daughter tells me all the time she hates me nagging and telling her what to do. Cause she’s like, I’m going to do it. Like you don’t have to remind me

Brie Tucker: daughter

JoAnn Crohn: to do it. Yes, she is my daughter and Josh’s as well. We’re both like that. So she’s told me, she’s like, I’ll do it before I go to bed.

And she goes to bed so much later than I do. So like I’ve learned now that, okay, it’s going to be done by the next morning and it is, and she usually follows through with that. If you don’t have that understanding and you don’t have that set time, you can’t hold people accountable because they will always poke the holes back.

So. Be clear on those details, have the time when it needs to be done. for example, my son with his laundry, we all do our own laundry in our house. They have been since they were eight. Yeah.

Brie Tucker: you taught me that one actually and I am so

JoAnn Crohn: yes, it is amazing. Like I don’t do anyone’s laundry, but my own, I have a big basket of clothes to fold that are my own, so I’m like, I’m fine with that.

But, having them do their own laundry, my son likes to push the boundaries. And instead of doing his laundry, I’ll notice he starts wearing shirts. With little food things on them. And I’m like, we might need to do the laundry, bud. And so he still needs to be instructed in that. And he needs to be given a clear guideline.

Be like, Hey, you need to do the laundry before noon on Sunday, because that’ll give him enough buffer time. If he starts before noon, it’ll be done by the time.

Brie Tucker: we have to do the same thing in our household but it’s because we have you know Four to five people here any given week and it’s That then the laundry becomes a commodity because everybody wants to do it on Sunday. And I’m like, okay, we can’t do five people’s laundry in one day. It just is not going to happen.

JoAnn Crohn: So that one thing in particular is a really great thing to tell kids and you can work with them and be like, when should this be done? Because they need to have buy in in it with it too. However, with your partner, it needs to be handled differently because your partner is on equal footing with you.

Brie Tucker: We have to remember that.

JoAnn Crohn: so. We have to remember that. And we have, uh, if we have not done an episode yet about delegating chores with your partner, we should do one, Brie. I think have not.

Brie Tucker: I don’t think we’ve done one specific about your partner. So that’ll be, I’m making a note right now. I’m writing it down.

JoAnn Crohn: yeah, you can not tell your partner specific time. There’s another process for that. We go into it a lot in balance, but it’s, it’s another process.

It’ll make them feel like they are, uh, being patronized. If you do that, kids need a little bit more direction because kids that those thoughts don’t pop in their heads. But, uh, your partner’s on equal footing. And then the third, the third thing you need to

Brie Tucker: is the hardest one. I think this is honestly the hardest one for most people.

JoAnn Crohn: Yeah. It’s a step back.

Let them do it. Let them fail. Let them experience the consequences of their behavior. And that could be really hard if their failure actually affects other people in the house. Really hard. Like, I mean, dishes in my house. I’ve just learned to accept it. Like, I see all the reasons dishes are put off. And I think that’s another thing to really step back.

You need to be able to first assume that they are reasonable and rational people who don’t want to piss you off. Like they really don’t, and I say don’t want to piss you off because so many of our assumptions are like, they’re lazy, they’re irresponsible, they’re all of these things, and if I just ground them, then that’ll fix the issue, Brie, and it doesn’t.

Brie Tucker: again, like you said, in general human nature. We’re not trying to be bad people. We’re not trying to make other people angry.

Again, there’s normally a reason.

JoAnn Crohn: there’s a reason and there’s a story behind it. So if you can figure out what their story is, then you’re going to be able to step back a lot easier. So for example, with the dishes, I can very much identify with why they don’t do the dishes. Dishes suck. they really do. They

Brie Tucker: Mine’s the bathrooms. I hate cleaning the bathrooms. I put them off so much.

JoAnn Crohn: Yeah. And like you see it from their point of view, instead of just something that needs to be done, seeing Oh, this is a boring, mundane task that I really don’t want to do myself. And I understand this. I understand this. And yet we do still need to do it because we need clean dishes and we want to eat off clean silverware.

So when we step back, we’re actually able to have those conversations with them. Like there was a thing where we had dinner the other night and it was scavenging night because it’s where we eat leftovers. We call it scavenging. And like, you’re just, yeah, you’re able to eat whatever you want to eat. You just look to see if it’s in the fridge and then you grab it and scavenging.

I took the last clean spoon. It’s my son’s job to load the dishwasher. And I didn’t tell him, Oh, you have to clean a spoon or anything like that. I just let him figure it out for himself. And he was like, Oh, there’s no clean spoons. I’ll just eat with my hands.

Brie Tucker: Oh my God.

JoAnn Crohn: He eats with his hands.

And so we do have that conversation then. And we’re like, okay, so you’re okay with eating with your hands, but let’s talk about the rest of us. I am not okay with eating with my hands. It makes me so upset when I have to go clean the dishes. can you please put them in the dishwasher? And he’s like, I, after I eat, I’ll go put them in the dishwasher.

And that’s how we get through it. And we get to have those conversations and it’s not grounding. It’s just a conversation.

Brie Tucker: Well, and it also like, so again, the stepping back is one of the hardest pieces of the delegating chores to other people in the family because nobody likes being hovered over and being told what to do, no matter how old they are. So, I like how you had that conversation, you could have just said to them Do you need to wash the dishes?

But instead you were like telling him, from my perspective, I don’t like doing that. And it frustrates me. And he could understand that he could relate. He’s like, yeah, okay. I hear you on that one. That’s way different than like, it’s your job to do the dishes. Why are they not done? Right? there’s that for starters, asking them over and over and over and over again, just irritates them.

It makes them almost not want to do it. Just at least it does for-

JoAnn Crohn: Just out of spite.

Brie Tucker: Just out of spite, but then also like giving them a big thing too with, especially with our kids, letting them know when we notice that they’re doing a good job,

Hey, we noticed that you have been getting your chores done, like of the dishes or the vacuuming or putting your backpack away in your room.

And I just want you to know that I really appreciate that.

JoAnn Crohn: Yeah. so something I did that actually worked with my daughter. So saying those things, they’re like, Oh, stop being so cringy,

Brie Tucker: I was going to say, if it’s a teen, you get up. Whatever.

JoAnn Crohn: What I did instead is I wrote her a note and I wrote all of those things in a note. And I wrote all those things like I value in her. And like, I even went even more cringy than I would do verbally because I want her to know this. And then I just gave her the note and walked away. She read it and she didn’t say anything about it for a while, but then like five hours later, six hours later, she’s like, I did appreciate the note.

Thank you. And so it’s getting it. So like teens do appreciate the comments and everybody I think appreciates it, but it feels so foreign, especially if you’re used to being really hard and self critical on yourself. that we’re almost programmed to not accept it at first to say it’s cringy because it’s like all those feelings we’re just not used to feeling but a note works write it in a note and you will see they do appreciate it and they do like it.

Brie Tucker: say whatever method you can, just letting them know that you see it.

have it be genuine, genuinely, I really do appreciate what you did. And then that’s it. Like if there’s one thing I have learned recently, it’s that coming in with agenda kills it faster than

anything else. So….

JoAnn Crohn: And they could smell that agenda

Brie Tucker: so you’re, you’re not fishing for them to come back and say, Oh, thank you, mom.

I’m so happy you, you noticed that. you’re not, no, you’re just giving them the I note and think of it like you are just depositing in their positive self-esteem bank. you’re letting them

know, yeah, you’re just depositing that, that you know that they’re capable and that they can do things. And then you’ll walk away. you’ll walk

JoAnn Crohn: That’s a great comment about the agenda. Yeah, it’s just putting it in their positive self-esteem bank. That’s what they need a lot of times. So We want to see you delegate. Tell us how you do it. And remember, the best mom is a happy mom. Take care of you, and we’ll talk to you later.Brie Tucker: Thanks for stopping by.

Brie Tucker

COO/ Podcast Producer at No Guilt Mom
Brie Tucker has over 20 years of experience coaching parents with a background in early childhood and special needs. She holds a B.S. in Psychology from the University of Central Missouri and is certified in Positive Discipline as well as a Happiest Baby Educator.

She’s a divorced mom to two teenagers.

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