Grounded all summer – what a bummer for having a messy room.
Today on Ask a House Cleaner a kid writes in grounded for not “cleaning my room.” The House Cleaning Guru, Angela Brown gives advice for kids. And tips for parents about grounding, punishment, discipline, and reciprocity.
Clean your room – you don’t get grounded. But it’s more about the privileges associated with obedience than it is the art to negotiate your punishment or make a deal.
Get what you want because you follow the rules and are obedient.
Listen: Grounded All Summer For Not Cleaning My Room
Watch: Grounded All Summer For Not Cleaning My Room
Hey there, I’m Angela Brown, and this is Ask a House Cleaner. This is a show where you get to ask a house cleaning question, and I get to help you find an answer.
Question: Grounded – How Do I Get Out of Grounding Quick?
Now, today’s question comes from a youth.
A kid of some sort who is grounded for the entire summer for not cleaning his room. And he wants to know “How do I get ungrounded quick?”
Answer: Grounded All Summer – Big Punishment Needs Big Change
Well, that’s an interesting question. But let’s back up just a couple of steps. If you got grounded for the entire summer that’s a really big punishment for some really big behavior.
My experience has been that kids don’t get grounded for an entire summer for being obedient.
And so, if you got grounded for the whole summer you probably were disobedient many times.
How Many Times Does A Parent Have To Ask You Before You’re Grounded?
And so, parents ask you “Can you please clean your room?” Again, and again, and when you don’t, that’s where the big punishment comes from.
Now, before we talk about cleaning the room let’s talk about respecting authority.
Because what we’re looking at here is a weird situation.
You can say “Well it’s my room, why do I have to keep a clean?”
You have to keep a clean because although it’s your room, your room lives inside a house that your parents own.
They purchased this house. And so, whatever happens under this roof belongs to them. They get to make the rules.
You’re Parents Get To Make The Rules
And if they say “we want your room clean,” they have every right to ask you to do that.
And so, if they ask you and you don’t clean your room, that shows them that you don’t respect authority.
And if you don’t respect authority when you’re young, it’s unlikely you’re going to respect authority when you’re old.
And so, it’s a lesson that we have to teach kids. Because if you don’t learn to respect authority and follow the rules in your house, as you get older you might not follow the rules of the land.
And if you don’t follow grown up rules, you’ll get grounded for life. And you go to a place they call prison.
Grown Ups Get Grounded Too
Or they’re grounded for several years, or whatever they’re their sentence, or their term is.
And so, if you don’t respect authority that creates a bunch of problems.
What your parents are trying to teach you right now is “Hey, we have a house. We have rules, and we have expectations. And if you’re going to be our kid, and you’re going to live in our house, you have to follow our rules.”
Your Parents Love You Even If You’re Grounded
So that’s the big picture of what’s going on here. Your parents don’t hate you. I promise they don’t hate you. I don’t know why but there’s this thing with parents and kids.
Kids can be mean and evil, and the parents still love them anyway.
You’re an extension of your parents. They still love you even if you have a messy room.
If they grounded you for the entire summer they’re probably trying to teach you a lesson.
Now, there’s a quick way to get out of this situation.
You Get To Decide What Happens Next
And you asked me “how do I get out of being grounded quickly?
How you get out of a quick as you decide. You decide as a kid that you are going to be obedient.
Now I know that I’m talking about house cleaning and that’s my specialty and obedience is not my specialty. But I will share this with you.
I grew up in a large family. There are 19 of us kids. And I do know a little bit about obedience. Here’s a secret.
If you are obedient and you follow the rules. (Whatever the rules are, whatever game you’re playing, whoever is in charge,) life is so much easier. And your choices go far beyond what you might suspect.
Reciprocity – Create Goodwill that Repays You
When you are obedient and follow the rules you create an environment of reciprocity.
That’s a really big word but what reciprocity means is if I do something nice for you, you want to do something nice back for me.
For example: If you clean your room – your parents will want reward you.
It also works in a negative way. If you don’t clean your room – they punish or ground you.
Cleaning your room creates good will. This means good feelings towards you.
Instead of taking away your privileges they want to give you more privileges. Right?
Negotiate Your Rules for Being Grounded
So how do you get out of this quick?
The first thing you do is you ask your mother or your dad whoever grounded you. “What does a clean room look like?”
And have them explain it to you because it might be that you don’t know. So, they need to clarify.
“This means picking up your clothes. Folding them and putting them on the shelf.”
“You need to gather all your books and stack them on the bookcase.”
“Hang all the shoes on the rack on the back of the door.”
“The Legos go in a bin with a snap on lid.”
Once they explain the rules for having a clean room – then go do those things.
Get Out of Being Grounded – Quick
Let’s play a game.
Let’s see if you can keep your room so clean that your mother or your dad never, have to ask you to clean it again.
Because that would really freak them out, right?
So, If they’ve been asking you all summer, and you your room has been messy all summer. If suddenly you cleaned your room and kept it clean, you would spook them for sure.
And that would be awesome.
Keep Your Room Clean for One Week
Okay, after your room has been clean for one week. Go back to your mom or your dad. Whoever grounded you and say; “Listen, I’ve decided that having a clean room is a good idea, and I respect your authority.
And so, from a week ago, I ‘ve kept my room clean. Now, my goal is to keep it clean every day from here on out.
And I would like to prove to you, that I can keep my room clean every day from here on out.”
Make a New Deal – About Being Grounded
So, let’s make a new deal. I don’t like being grounded. And I can keep my room clean. You can inspect my room every day. Every day that my room passes that inspection, can I be off of grounding?
And if you inspect my room and find it messy, you can ground me again.”
And make a deal. They call it negotiation.
That’s a reasonable kind of a deal. And if they grounded you for the whole summer for not cleaning your room, there’s no reason to keep you grounded if your room is clean.
Adults Have to Prove Themselves Too
Adults in prison have a parole. They have a hearing, and they are judged on their good behavior.
And if they’re good behavior is appropriate, sometimes the judge lets those people out of prison early.
So, it is possible that you could get out of your grounding early.
But follow the rules starting today. And it doesn’t matter what the rules are. If they say “We’re going somewhere. Please go get in the car.” You want to be the first one in the car.
If they say “It’s dinner time.” You want to be the first one at the dinner table.
You want to be as obedient as possible. Because with obedience comes rewards, not punishment.
Does that make sense?
Alright, that’s my tip for today. And until we meet again leave the world a cleaner place than when you found it.