Calmly Parenting the Strong-Willed Child :: Kirk Martin {Ep 69}

Apr 20, 2015


Ya’ll. The numbers don’t lie, my interview with Kirk Martin last month was a big hit.

Which tells me parents are desperate for ways to calmly manage and connect with their children. We don’t want to yell, lecture or threaten. But in the moment we don’t know what else to do.

And the kids who push us the hardest? The ones who corner us in resorting to heavy handed parenting?

The strong-willed kiddos.

On today’s episode I invited Kirk to come back and give us some tools for guiding the hard-to-handle little ones (and not so little ones).

Several husbands listened to episode 62. So in this episode Kirk starts with a couple of tips for the dads.

Then we get personal and I get advice for dealing with the boys in our home who say “I don’t want to” more than “yes, ma’am”. The solution has more to do with me than with them…ahem.

What we chat about:

  • Kirk’s advice for dad, using a football analogy
  • One small thing couples can do to show kids connection
  • Kirk’s helpful definition of a strong-willed child
  • Practical tips to help direct your bright children looking for ownership
  • How your tone affects your children’s response.
  • Making the transition from the old controlling way to new calm parenting–setting new expectations
  • Some of my new favorite phrases to use when parenting

Connect with Kirk:

Site :: Twitter :: Facebook :: Podcast

Links Mentioned:

Do you have a strong-willed child? What advice did you find most useful?

How to listen to the podcast:

1.Listen on the blog. Click through to and click the play button at the beginning of this post.

2. Listen on your smartphone, iPad or iPod Touch – There are a lot of great podcasting apps. Apple has a free one (that I mentioned) in the app store, there is also one called Downcast. It allows you to search for shows, subscribe to them and even speed up the audio. If you don’t have an iDevice, you can listen via Stitcher.

3. Subscribe to the Podcast – access the podcast in iTunes (Click here to access via iTunes). You can also search for it on your smartphone app (like the ones listed above) and subscribe.

*If you missed past episodes, you can listen via iTunes or click on this page of the GodCenteredMom site to find a listing of all the episodes.

**Check out this page for instructions on how to leave a rating or review on iTunes: 


  1. Shonda

    I just had 2 very rough days with my strong willed child this week! He is 6.5 and we homeschool. Just finished Kindergarten!! But it was NOT easy. I am looking into different ways to homeschool. I like some of the ideas Kirk had for homework. I like the ownership idea. I think that is the BIG issue with my son. So many great things to try and yes, Heather, I need serious help too. Being calm is not in my nature when my child digs his heels in and I’m strong willed too!

    • GodCenteredMom

      Oh shonda! So sorry to hear about your rough days. Feel like those come in waves here as well. So thankful you found Kirk’s ideas helpful and will pray you and I learn how to stay calm & control our own emotions. Blessings.

      • Shonda

        Thanks, Heather! I am actually a calm person unless my feathers are ruffled by my son. I am memorizing and working on Proverbs 31:26- “When she speaks, her words are wise, and she gives instruction with kindness.” I am also going to re-read Unglued by Lysa TerKeurst. And I still need to read Brooke McGlothlin’s How to Control Your Emotions So They Don’t Control You. With God all things are possible! Thanks for being real and sharing your real life.

  2. Violetta

    Heather, I have recently stumbled across your podcast and let me tell you something….I look forward to each podcast like it is pure GOLD. I absolutely LOVE it. I have recently quit my job to stay home with my 3 kids and have been struggling significantly with parenting my strong-willed 3 year old son. Your podcasts always leave me ENCOURAGED and empowered as a mother and inspire me to keep my eyes on God. THANK YOU!!!!


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