The power of saying ‘take your time’

Take the pressure off your little one’s shoulders with this surprisingly powerful phrase.

In this modern age of technology and virtually everything being accessible at the touch of a button, many of us parents can place too much pressure on our children. Sometimes we expect them to do everything that is asked of them, as quickly as we’d like it to be done. And it’s not just us. How often will a child get scolded by a shopkeeper for hesitating over their potential purchase? Or how many times do they get rushed down a school hallway by older children when they’re trying to find their way to their next class? What we all should remember is that our kids are doing their very best with the skills they have at their disposal. It’s our responsibility to help them manoeuvre through this world safely, not to chastise them for taking too long doing something.


Next time you see your little one stressing over a task, such as getting dressed or packing their school bag, say ‘take your time.’ The accompanying tone is just as important as the words of this magic phrase. Try to speak the words gently and softly, and watch them take effect on your little one. Once the words sink in, they can immediately relax. Their shoulders may become less hunched up with stress and their breathing will slow down.

Furthermore, they will actually be better able to complete the task at hand. This is the remarkable effect of this phrase. By encouraging our children to take their time, they will often finish whatever they are doing reasonably quickly and, because it isn’t rushed, it will actually result in their bag being packed properly or the uniform on the right way around!


Another arena in which saying ‘take your time’ will definitely help your little one is when they are trying to express themselves. Sometimes children simply don’t have the words needed to translate their feelings to you. These feelings can be so overwhelming that your child may shut down and not be able to tell you how they’re feeling at all. Once you notice this happening, try telling them ‘take your time.’

Again, your tone here is key in creating the positive effect you’re looking for. If your little one detects any harshness or impatience, it will most likely produce the opposite outcome. Said with a soft and calm tone, this phrase will put your child at ease. They can feel safe to take a moment, catch their breath and consider their feelings. Providing them with this space will enable them to truly explain to you what’s bothering them, in their own terms.

‘Take your time’ is an excellent phrase that can be used with your child in all sorts of situations. It will ensure that they can continue to try their best, without feeling like they’re under pressure. So try it out with your little one, and watch how they flourish!


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