I will state one word, and you will say the first thing that concerns your mind when you check out that word. Don’t think for long. Simply say the first word that occurs to you. OK, here we go.
Chances are, when you check out “sky” the very first word that concerned your mind was “blue” or “high”.
When you check out “night” you may think of the words “dark” or “day”.
What about “discipline”? What did you consider when you check out that? In my case, I would probably have gone with “penalty” or “correct”.
The concept of discipline being associated with punishment is implanted in our mind. The first thing we think about when we hear the word “discipline” is normally something unfavorable.
However, did you know that the word discipline originates from the Latin word ‘disciplina’ which indicates mentor, which in turn comes from ‘discipulus’ which actually equates to student?
Yet, I can wager that really couple of who attempted the little exercise above would have thought “teach” when they first checked out the word “discipline”.
For whatever reason, for many years, discipline has actually gone from indicating “to teach” to “to punish”!
Today we check out “positive discipline” a concept that focuses on reverting things back to the roots– when children do something wrong, instead of punishing them, moms and dads teach and guide them to set the behavior right
So, how do we return from “to punish” to “to teach”? In small child actions, obviously!
Here are a few pointers to get going, and by following some of these (choose a subset of the ones that work for you), gradually we can change our perspective about “discipline”.
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1. The core of favorable discipline: There are no bad kids, just bad behavior.
Positive Discipline: There are no bad kids, just bad behavior.Think about that for a minute and you will understand how true the statement is. This is the fundamental property of the positive discipline idea. When we as moms and dads recognize that inherently our kids are not bad, they are just behaving terribly, the rest of it will slowly fall in location.
For instance, suppose your kid strikes another kid. The first thing you feel is most likely embarrassment and shame, followed closely by a worry that your child may have a “mean” streak. If you opt for that sensation and call your child a “bad woman” or “naughty young boy” you enhance the unfavorable picture of your child both in your own mind and in your child’s.
Your kid may just be hungry/sleepy/tired or any of the hundred different tension triggers that may have made her act out. Simply put, something in your child’s environment is affecting your child to behave terribly. When we accept that it was just a behavior that was bad, and the kid herself is great– mentor instead of punishing ends up being easier. For example, instead of shrieking, “Why did you do that? I do not comprehend how you can be so mean sometimes” you will remain in a much better situation to say “That wasn’t the very best habits– we do not strike our friends”.
At this point, I need to admit, I have a pretty strong-willed child and this will likely just get a “back answer” from her (or the water works, if she is already feeling guilty about it), but in her mind (and my own), I have planted the seed that she is okay, it was just bad behavior, and it ends up being simple for both of us to deal with it positively using one of the other techniques below.
2. Instead of mentioning what the child did wrong, show the kid how to set things right.
Building on the example above, let’s consider the best case situation initially where you catch your kid before she actually hits. Nevertheless, instead of stating “Don’t hit” or “NO hitting” try saying “Use your words” or “Ask perfectly”. When you say “Don’t strike” it does not provide the kid any information of what she must be doing rather. Without that understanding, she might just wind up choosing her original plan to strike or she may select to go with some other alternative which is equally bad– like shoving the other kid.
Now, on the other hand, if you capture the kid after the incident, convey that what she did was wrong and give her an “out”. For instance, you could state “That was not a great choice, we don’t strike our good friends. Do you wish to state sorry and make Kaylee feel much better?” and if your kid is not prepared to say sorry yet (mine typically requires a long time), you can continue with “Until we are ready to say sorry, let’s sit here and read a book” (This is sometimes also referred to as “time in” versus the standard “time out”).
3. Be kind however company; show compassion and regard
Now, in her mind, what she did was right and justified. It can be extremely discouraging when she insists on some incorrect behavior as being right (mine is 5, and she can justify her actions until blue in her face with “She started it, she didn’t share the toy”). As parents, instead of arguing back, we simply need to stay calm and repeat what we stated in a kind way however very strongly. For example, repeat “Hitting hurts, we do not strike our pals” and “Yes, sharing is good, however we do not strike somebody even if they do not share” and different variations of it, over and over without losing temper or raising voice.
It likewise assists to show some compassion– for instance, “You actually want the doll that she is having fun with, however hitting is not the best choice.” Just by feeling sorry for your kid that she actually wants the doll, you can win half the battle.
4. Whenever possible, deal choices
Favorable Discipline: Whenever possible, deal choicesAfter offering compassion, you can take it to the next level by providing her some choices. Options provide your kid a sense of control. Not just is she not “bad”, instead of being “penalized” she is provided control … sometimes, that’s more than enough to snap a kid out of a funk. This is one of the most typical positive discipline techniques suggested by professionals.
Simple choices like, “That was not great, do you want to make Kaylee feel better by giving her a hug or by saying you are sorry?” or “Do you want to state sorry and continue having fun with Kaylee or do you wish to read a book with me till you calm down?” go a long way.
Keep in mind to select your options carefully however, because as soon as a choice is used, and your kid selects one, you need to honor it.
5. Deal with errors as opportunities to learn
A child will frequently act out due to the fact that she perceives it as the methods to get to an end. When you use bad habits as an opportunity to teach them not only that what they did is wrong however likewise empower them with options, it will help them in the future from utilizing it as a tool even when you are not around.
Attempt not to launch into a lecture though. If possible use examples and recollections from past behavior. “Do you keep in mind last time when Tim struck you and how much it hurt? It made you mad/sad, right?” or “Remember when you fell off the chair and bumped your head? When you hit someone, it hurts the same way.”
6. Change the scene– prevent the misdeed from being repeated
Avoidance is much better than cure. That phrase is cliched, for a reason. If you are dealing with reoccurring wrongdoing, take a look at what you can do to prevent it in the first place.
Brushing my daughter’s teeth in the morning was a big inconvenience. She should have been around 3 years old then. She would whimper, scream, weep, lash out by physically hitting or kicking us and do anything she could to leave it. We screamed, yelled, paid off, rewarded and did everything we might in the name of dental hygiene. (Just for the record, this was all before I started on this whole fine parenting journey …) Nothing seemed to work though. It was sad to view her start her day in this manner, and it was draining pipes for us to deal with all the drama early in the early morning too.
Then I read somewhere that some children do not deal with transitions well. Coincidentally, my hubby took place to just select her out of bed one day and walk her around your home while she continued to snooze on his shoulders. When they went to the backyard, she snapped out of it and was thrilled to see the birdies and squirrels. Which day it was actually easy to brush her teeth. It was entirely unanticipated, and all of a sudden it clicked in my mind– she was not really resisting the brushing of her teeth, but was “acting” out since the shift from sleep to a busy day was too overwhelming for her.
These days, we spend a few minutes every morning to assist her make the transition, however the time is well invested, since it makes the remainder of the early morning go much smoother. It’s easy to call your kid persistent, headstrong, disobedient, ill-mannered etc, and try to discipline her for it, but if you get to the root cause of why she in some cases behaves the method she does, you will see that there is a truly sweet kid hidden in there, who may not need any “disciplining” in the traditional sense of the word at all.
7. Set clear expectations and boundaries, and correspond
Kids have a way with finding loopholes and pressing borders. Our very first effort to assist our daughter make the shift from sleep to waking much easier by relaxing the guideline that you go straight from bed to the restroom nearly backfired. Once she left her drowsy grouchiness, she analyzed the relaxation of rules as an invite to sneak in a bit of play time before she needed to go potty and brush her teeth.
We needed to put our foot down and state (carefully, however firmly) that at the start of the day you first freshen up, eat your breakfast and just then start playing. You might visit to say good morning to the birdies prior to brushing your teeth as a special privilege, but any arguments about that, and you will just need to bypass that opportunity.
It was tough to come up with a story that would permit us to unwind the “old” rules without leaving the “brand-new” guidelines wide open for negotiation, and something we could be constant with, but the effort has settled in leaps and bounds.
8. Usage single word suggestions or questions or state realities, instead of purchasing or demanding compliance
Positive Discipline: Use single word remindersI was astonished the very first time I observed how well this works. As usual, my child left of the bathroom with the lights still on. Typically I would bark “Switch off the light”. She would sometimes follow the direction, and in some cases she would counter with “You switch off the lights” or a bold “No!” or even worse, just plain disregard me (Yes, even 5 years of age do that– my heart goes out to you moms and dads of tweens and teenagers!).
Anyhow, that day I just said “lights” in a regular, casual tone. And surprise, surprise she stated “Oopsie Daisy!”, returned to the bathroom, switched off the lights and returned to playing. I have actually adopted this with all my heart now– anytime I remember, I simply utilize a single word said in the tone of a friendly reminder, and most of the times, it works. “Door” gets the door shut, “Car” gets her to stop dawdling and get strolling towards the cars and truck, “Sink” gets her to put her used meals in the sink and so on.
I have actually also used the question strategy, which has actually worked quite well up until now. Instead of yelling “Go, put your shoes back on the shoe rack”, a simple question like “Hey, where do we put our shoes?” finishes the job with a lot less resistance.
Similarly, stating facts helps too. When cleaning hands, if she is fooling around, I simply mention “water is squandering” and she is likely to clean her hands much faster than criticism like “you are wasting water” or ordering her “wash your hands quick”.
9. Interact to come up with a mutually-agreeable solution (problem fixing).
This is what I will be personally focusing on this week. I have actually attempted this a number of times and I am convinced about how reliable this technique can be. That said, it is not something I do extremely often, and it does not come naturally to me when I’m around my daughter, perhaps because I still see her as my little infant Perfect candidate to try and become a practice this week!
In the book How to Talk So Kids Will Listen & Listen So Kids Will Talk, (A book that has actually had a substantial effect on my perspective as a parent, extremely recommended!), the authors suggest following these steps for problem resolving.
Step I: Talk about the kid’s feelings and requirements.
Action II: Talk about your sensations and needs.
Action III: Brainstorm together to discover an equally agreeable option.
Action IV: Write down all concepts– without evaluating.
Step V: Decide which ideas you like, which you do not like, and which you plan to follow through on.
As the authors themselves say, you do not require to go through all the actions to reach a resolution. A lot of our discipline related discussion these days take place in the cars and truck during commutes, and so I will try a fine-tuned, travel-friendly variation of this for any problems that pop up during the week. It will be an intriguing week to see how this pans out.
10. Let the child face the repercussions (natural repercussions and not fabricated effects to match your needs!).
If you resemble me, you are all too knowledgeable about imposing a ton of made-up “effects” that suit your convenience to get your kid to do what you wish. For example, if my child does not complete her supper on time, she does not get to enjoy TV. When you look into it deeply however, it is not a “natural repercussion” … it is simply something I made up to get her to comply. The majority of professionals say, it is much better not to use these made-up repercussions (which are actually punishments in disguise) and to let natural consequences take over, which in this case would be to let her go to sleep hungry.
Frankly however, I am not there yet. The over-protective control freak part of me steps in way prior to my child gets to deal with any natural effects. This is something I require to deal with in the future, but if a few of you are ready to take it on, go all out! I would love to hear your stories about how it exercised.
So there you have it– 10 ways you can deal with tough scenarios using positive discipline. Seriously, after reading this, would you ever want to try a standard, punitive, discipline technique?
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The 2-Minute Action Plan for Fine Parents.
For our quick-action today, quickly walk through a few of these easy concerns–.
What is your concept of “discipline”?
Is it actually working?
Which of your present techniques do you need to keep?
Which are the important things you require to let go?
What brand-new tricks can you try?
I would suggest getting at least one brand-new favorable discipline method to try and/or one old routine to let go of, and focus on that for the rest of the week. It might work for you, it may not. But unless you attempt, you’ll never know!
And as usual, put it in writing to add a level of accountability. You can scribble it on a paper, a journal, on your blog site, your facebook upgrade or in the remarks area below– the real medium does not matter.
The Ongoing Action Plan for Fine Parents.
For the rest of the week, catch yourself when you start to dole out punishment and concern if that will actually help in the long run. Ask yourself, if you are not around to keep an eye on them, and they make sure that you will never ever learn, will the penalty still keep them from wishing to duplicate the incriminating act? And then, concentrate on a minimum of one tip and try it out as your new discipline method.
Important Note of Caution: Expect some obstacles. Both you are your kids are used to a particular style of discipline– when you change that and embrace favorable discipline instead, your kids will press you, and you might not be well equipped to handle the new scenario with your new skills. It is fine to fall back for a while, as long as you acknowledge it as a regression and commit to discovering a way to return on the favorable path!