DISH UP, SHUT UP! is the phrase to keep in your head – but what exactly do I mean it? Let me explain…
DISH UP: You have to be fully in charge of what food is served – not your child. Now this may sound scary – but you don’t have to suddenly start presenting your child with completely new meals and foods. In fact, you shouldn’t do that because the backlash from your child will be too big and make it difficult for you to carry on! No, start by making small tweaks to their meals and snacks like this. When they complain or want a food removed from their plate, stick to the ‘magic’ sentences like glue and the protests will soon fizzle out.
SHUT UP! I don’t mean sit in silence of course! I mean serve the food and then say nothing more about it. No pestering, encouraging, reminding, bribing, praising – or any other type of pressure to eat. (Here’s a list of Things not to say to your fussy eater at the table!) Talk about other stuff instead! Of course it’s not always easy to make chit-chat with a young child for a whole mealtime – for clear, precise advice on how to make the table a happy, engaging place where your child wants to be, see my new e-booklet: How to get your little blighter to come to the table – and stay there!
Stick this phrase Dish up, Shut up! on your fridge to help you stick to it – or inside a kitchen cupboard if your child can already read. For the approach to work, they mustn’t know you’re up to something!