Home Instead Senior Care, a leading provider of Alzheimer’s in home care, trains their professional CAREGivers to try three times, in three different ways, to turn a no into a yes.

Here’s an example of how you can use that technique with your family member:

Let’s say you are trying to get Mom to sit in the garden on a beautiful day.

One: Ask her the way you always have. “Mom, it’s a lovely day out. Let’s go out to the garden to look at the roses.”

She declines.

Two: Use some information from her life story to make a more personal request. “Mom, let’s go out to the garden and see your roses. I need your advice on how to prune them properly and you are a master gardener!”

She declines.

Three: Take her hand into your hand and point to the garden (to give her physical cues) as you say, “Mom, it’s a lovely day out. Let’s go to the garden to look at the roses.” [Pause] “I really appreciate your help in the garden. After we’re done, let’s get some strawberry ice cream.”

This time you are giving her a physical cue to the desired response and offering your hand for support. Adding another sentence showing that you admire her willingness to help you and offering a favorite reward afterwards both increase your chances of success.

This time she says yes.

Sometimes the stakes are higher than a social visit to the rose garden. Getting Mom to agree to go to the doctor or use in-home services can be a matter of safety, security, and overall health.