It’s true.

Today is a Monday, and to make matters worse, it’s a Monday after a long family vacation.  No one wanted to wake up, including the 3 year old who usually jumps right out of bed (when his alarm clock bunny is walking- more on this amazing invention soon).  It was a rainy morning, dark and cozy and here I was, bribing my kids to wake up and head off to their early morning swim classes.

The pre-kids me would have turned up her nose at this.

Bribing kids is not great parenting according to the “20 something” me.  I used to think only the parents who can’t control their offspring would do such a thing, right?! WRONG.  I was DEAD WRONG.

Turns out there’s nothing wrong with a little incentive.

Bribery is just a more “ugly” term for so many positive words like incentives and rewards.  Pretty sure my old workplace “bribed” us to sell more hotel rooms by offering things like bonuses and Mexican vacations.  Why not teach kids young that there are great prizes for being good, listening, and doing well?!

Yes, I bribed my son and guess what?!  It worked!!  Little guy isn’t always 100% on board for swim classes:  he doesn’t like going under water or dealing with the louf indoor swimming scene.  He even doesn’t want to swim if he isn’t wearing his favorite superhero suit (which is rarely clean for some reason on swim class days).

I was able to convince him to not only eat breakfast, and wear his shark swimsuit, but also to happily march into his swim class by using just a little bribery.  I consider this a huge parenting win, especially for a Monday morning.

Why didn’t someone incentivize me to get up today?  Maybe a Chai tea latte by my bedside would have helped with my morning adult grogginess.  Turns out being a grown-up doesn’t always come with such perks!

Want to know the best part?

This bribery only cost me $1.  (Okay, maybe $2 since I had to include the six year old or she would have lost her mind.)  All it took was saying, “you can get animal crackers from swim school when you’re finished.”  That’s it.  One little bag of animal shaped crackers saved my morning, and my sanity.

What’s the lesson from all of this?

Bribe those kids when you need to.  If another mother gives you the side eye, just smile at her.  She will be on the “bribery train” soon enough; and will think back to the day she judged others with regret.  Get out there moms and dads and help make your day smoother and more successful with adding a few “incentives” to your children’s day!

You’re welcome!!!