– Firstly, mean what you say. It is very confusing for a child if you say one thing and do another. Before you speak, make sure you mean and are able to carry through with what you say. For example, if you say “Come inside now or there will be no TV’ and the child doesn’t come inside, don’t switch on the TV to entice them in, and don’t turn it on just because they are whining or having a tantrum. Let your ‘yes be yes’ and your ‘no be no’.

– Listen to what you say; do you sound authoritative? Raising your voice doesn’t mean you sound authoritative – it often means you’ve lost it! If you want to sound authoritative, lower your tone of voice, speak a little slower and emphasise important words. A low, emphasised voice carries much more authority than one which is raised and loud.