Strong-Willed Kids

Children who make decisions with intensity tend to be labeled “strong-willed.” At the end of the day, their parents feel as if they’ve been engaged in hand-to-hand combat—and that the child often wins at the parent’s expense! Most parents consider a strong will a negative personality trait because it often creates resistance and frustration in family life. Yet, in reality, it’s the strong-willed kids who are often better equipped to succeed, be creative, and face adversity.

Children with strong wills have the potential to become the next generation of leaders. They have their own ideas and plans. They know what they want. They’re persistent, confident, passionate, and determined to succeed at whatever they choose to do.

Leaders have an agenda, look for ways to incorporate others into their plans, and have a high need for control in life. Balanced with graciousness, leaders become a treasure because they make things happen, create organization out of chaos, and motivate people to action.

Unfortunately, it’s hard to raise a leader. These kids tend to have their own ways of doing things and like to tell other people (including their parents) what to do. A strong will keeps a child moving in a certain direction in spite of obstacles. Often these children need bigger barriers or tighter limits to teach them that those boundaries are firm.

Don’t be discouraged by the effort it takes to teach a strong-willed child which limits not to push. The strong-willed child accomplishes things in life, because the roadblocks that might hold others back are no match for this kid’s determination. Your job is to help him know the difference between obstacles to overcome and limits to live within.

A strong will can be an asset… as long as the heart is in the right place.

Have you developed some tools to teach boundaries to a strong-willed child in your family while still enjoying the child's determination?

Milan Tomic

Hi. I’m Designer of Blog Magic. I’m CEO/Founder of ThemeXpose. I’m Creative Art Director, Web Designer, UI/UX Designer, Interaction Designer, Industrial Designer, Web Developer, Business Enthusiast, StartUp Enthusiast, Speaker, Writer and Photographer. Inspired to make things looks better.

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  1. We recently realized that one of the problem we supposedly faced with our 3-year-old daughter could be used for her own good and ours without raising any conflict and actually allowing us to grow even closer to each other: She is definitely a very creative and strong-willed child. She has always been and to some extent worked with me at home as I am cleaning, cooking, fixing breakfast, etc. She knows she is to obey fast and happy in whatever task, and she has no way out of that, and but she seemed to be always longing for something, always asking why don't we do this or that, and always trying to be in control of the duties we were performing. So, after praying and thinking and trying several approaches, we realized our daughter just really needed to be in control -of what she should. We decided to enjoy it and teach her how to do it. So, as I announced that we were fixing breakfast and she hurried to offer suggestions, I told her "Today, mommy wants you to be in charge of breakfast. You can choose what you think we need and set it all. I could see her joy in choosing some cookies, some nuts, setting the dishes, etc on the table and saying all the time "I will better take this, and this too. and oh! I forgot this that we will also need" I just gave her some happy, absolutely not-controlling suggestions.
    -"We don't want to forget some fruit, rigth, dear?"
    -"Of course not, mommy!" was the happy answer.
    When she said that everything was ready, I asked in enthusiasm, and checked on her in absolute happiness "Are you sure we have it all? Let's see.. tell me if we have something to drink in" And a happy smile would run into the kitchen whispering "glasses".
    She was still conscious that if I told her to do something, she should do it fast and happy... but I just decided not to tell her nearly anything. So, she saw that I was trusting her with some authority and responsibility over the things I allowed her to do... she was so very thankful to be allowed that much "freedom", and we were so very happy with her reactions and her "playing to be a mommy". It was just real family fun!

    This approach could be applied to many home situations. Today, we were both asking her for help. She was helping me with meal preparation and daddy with some plumbing (please understand- we ask her to do little duties and errands here and there, she is just 3). So, as soon as she helped me stirring something, she told me in a very serious, grown-up way. Sorry, mum, now daddy needs my help" So much fun!!

    May God bless you all as you enjoy the childresn the Lord has given you as a treasure... that's what we are doing, too!

  2. For our eldest daughter we also need to guide her in her natural leadership skills. She is now near age 6 and wants full control of how and when she plays with the younger brother and sister.

    Our emphasis has been to guide her into becoming a servant leader. We want her to ask her brother how he want to play the game or in some for or fashion include others in the choices. Her heart is in the right place so a gentle reminder is often enough for all parties to continue their activities with happy hearts.

  3. If you want to see a strong willed child than come to my home. My kids never listen after repeated punishments. When time outs didn't work we tried spanking that doesn't work. We tried reward systems that didn't work either. They keep doing the same thing over, and over again, and sometimes I feel like a prisoner in my own house. I now have issues with paranoia because I think they are into something when I'm not looking. I thought having kids would be fun to raise a family, and do things with them but when you try to do things the whole thing goes wrong. This can be dangerous because when they are strong willed, and don't listen they can easily get hurt when messing with things that can break. I'm just glad I got patience because other parents would give up, or go nuts. If you have any suggestions let me know thanks.