As Two Men & A Vacuum were walking around town, enjoying the fall weather, they suddenly saw the strangest thing: a grown woman throwing a tantrum on her front lawn. What was happening? Was everything okay? Seeing an urgent need for moral assistance, they ran to her rescue.
“Ma’am, are you okay?” Two Men & A Vacuum asked, “Is there anything we can do to help?”
The woman began to quiet down a bit and whispered, “I’ve reached my breaking point. I don’t know what to do with her.”
Confused Two Men & A Vacuum asked for specifics.
“My daughter is just so messy!”
They looked at each other and smiled. “If you’d like, we can give you some tips that may help your situation.” They held out their hands and helped the woman up.
“Sure,” she said in between sniffles, “any help is appreciated.”
They went to the porch and sat down to discuss ideas. They asked the woman how she attempted to convince her child to stop being so messy. “I usually yell at her and punish her for not listening,” she responded.
“Well, we have a few alternatives up our sleeves.” They started by suggesting that the mother sit her child down and explain why it was important to clean. They said that many children do not respond to yelling, but that some are able to understand the importance of a clean room when they are spoken to in a calm manner.
“I had not thought of that,” she said solemnly, “I just get so frustrated.”
“Also, it is important to explain to your child that germs grow in dirty areas,” Two Men and A Vacuum continued, “and that some germs can cause her to get sick. Don’t try to scare her, just inform her of the possibility.”
The woman’s face began to show signs of hope. “Okay, so I can explain the reasoning behind not being messy to her, but how can I encourage her to clean on a consistent basis?”
“Oh, that’s the fun part! Now you can get creative and think of incentives that would motivate her,” Two Men & A Vacuum said with a smile. “What has she been asking for lately? A new toy or to go to a certain place like the park? Start tackling the mess with an awesome incentive.”
“That’s a good idea, but how long can it last?”
“Oh, the incentive is just for the initial clean up. You can use it to get her excited about cleaning and show that there is a reward at the end. Once the mess is gone, help keep it away by scheduling a quick clean up time every night before bed.”
The woman looked confused, “Every night?”
“Yep, a quick daily clean-up will prevent a huge mess from happening again. Be sure to give her praise and tell her how proud you are of her every time. If there are things that seem to always be out of place, look around her room and make sure those things have a specific place to go. Cleaning goes a lot faster when everything has a special place to live.”
The woman now had a huge smile on her face. “I’m excited about trying these tips out. I am so lucky that you two were walking by today!”
“We’re happy we could help.” Two Men & A Vacuum got up, shook her hand, and started walking down the street. “There is just something so great about helping out our community.”