“Immense power is acquired by assuring yourself in your secret reveries that you were born to control affairs.”
- Andrew Carnegie
I was at a friend’s house during the challenging process of putting Ryan, his active 3-year-old, to bed. I had to bite my tongue not to give advice about how it might’ve gone a bit better if my friend had understood something about a person’s–not just a child’s–need for control. Instead of offering Ryan choices about going to bed, he announced that it was time. This was Ryan’s signal that the battle was to begin. If instead my friend had said to fun-loving Ryan, “Do you want to play one more game before going to bed, or do you want to go to bed now?” the screaming and crying would probably not have embarrassed everyone there. Ryan would have chosen the game, and then probably, having felt some sense of control, gone to bed without a fight.