We all want to become better parents and adopt better discipline techniques, right? Right! Well, just as I promised here are the rest of our positive discipline guidelines:
10. Teach and model mutual respect. One way is to be kind and firm at the same time---Kind to show respect for the child, and firm to show respect for yourself and the needs of the situation. This is difficult during conflict, so use the next step first.
11. Proper timing will improve your effectiveness ten-fold. It does not “work” to deal with a problem at the time of conflict—emotions get in the way. Teach children about cooling off periods. You or the children can go to a separate room and do something to make yourself feel better—and then work on the problem with mutual respect.
12. Use logical consequences when appropriate. Follow the three R’s of logical consequences to make sure consequences are 1. Related 2. Respectful 3. Reasonable.
13. During family meetings children can help decide on logical consequences for not keeping their agreements. Remember not to use the work punishment—which does not work for long-range “good” results.
14. Avoid morning hassles by establishing routines the night before—like having children choose their clothes and lay them out, along with books, shoes, etc. Help children decide how much time they need to get ready, and allow them responsibility to get up, with their own alarm clock. Allow them to experience the consequences of being late.
15. Learn the four steps for winning cooperation 1. Guess how your child is feeling and get into your child’s world. Check with your child to see if your guess is correct. 2. Show understanding. You don’t have to agree or condone to understand. If possible, share an example of a time when you felt the same. 3. Share your feelings about the situation in a non-accusing manner, using “I” messages. Children are willing to hear you after they feel heard. 4. Work together on ideas to avoid the problem in the future—or to correct the present problem through a logical consequence. If the first three steps have been done in a respectful manner, your child will now be ready for cooperation.
16. Model recovery after you make mistakes—share with your child what you didn’t like about your behavior and ask for help in finding a better solution.
17. Teach children that mistakes are wonderful opportunities to learn!
Super Bonus: Make sure the message of love gets through.
Once again, please share the positive discipline experiences you’ve had with your children, no matter their age. Try something new from this list and then tell us what happened!