Toddlers tend to be demanding and stubborn and they can downright refuse to do anything they're asked to do. It can be a frustrating age.

In our house, the four-letter word we dislike the most is "can't."

There are ways to avoid the "can't" moments but it takes time, effort, and commitment to convince a toddler that he can do simple tasks like putting on his clothes, helping do easy chores, or following directions. Here are a few tips:

1. Be Patient

For parents, the most important skill is to remain calm in the face of toddler's obstinate behavior. If you keep your wits and communicate to your toddler clearly and succinctly what they need to accomplish, it will help the situation enormously. It may force you to find a wellspring of patience that you never knew you had, but the payoff could be well worth it.

2. Keep Toddler Focused

Our children are subjected to enormous amounts of stimuli on a minute-by-minute basis: TV, toys, smartphones, tablets, games, siblings, etc. Trying to teach them a skill in the midst of such chaos can be infinitely challenging. By removing the child from the stimuli, you can keep yourself and your child focused on the task at hand and, hopefully, have a positive outcome.

3. Use a Calming Technique

If your toddler really gets worked up about whatever skill you're attempting to help her master, try using a calming technique to help her cope. For instance, try focusing her breathing by asking her to pretend to smell some flowers and blow out birthday candles. This should help her take some relaxing breaths and regain composure.

4. Have Video Proof

The next time you want your toddler to put on his shoes before going outside and he tells you that he can't, whip out your smartphone and say, "Oh yes you can! Here's video of you doing it yesterday!" It's not guaranteed to work but maybe showing toddler that he can do something will give him the encouragement to try it again.

5. Keep It Simple

No matter what you're asking your toddler to accomplish, keep the goal simple. A young child's brain is still forming and, in many cases, is guided by their impulsive desires - part of normal toddler development. A good standard to try is to use two rules for a two year old, three for a three year old, etc.

6. Know When to Stop

Of course your toddler can pull up their pants after going potty. The fact they tell you that they can't is indicative of a child who may crave more attention from you or might be acting out about something else entirely. There's no sense in agitating your child and reinforcing negative behavior. Take a break, walk away for a few minutes, then ask your child if they're ready to try again.