A place to share struggles and triumphs, a place to bless and serve - but never a place to murmur or complain. 

Sunday, February 3, 2008

Great Parenting Advice

I was at a parenting class one time that I found very useful. I found the notes last week when I was going through some old papers. I was happy to see that I have implemented many of the things into my parenting - while there are still many that I need to work on. Most everything I have posted here came from the teacher, a few things are from me and I have added an asterisk.

Have dozens of positive interactions with my children.
(Zero negative interactions) 20 or more per hour that I am with my kids.
A positive interaction is a hug, kiss, smile, saying something nice such as “I’m glad you are my daughter/son, good job, good thinking, thank you, etc.”
I say “Thank You” a lot.
Praise and acknowledge:
intermittently and randomly
be brief, matter of fact & specific
Praise a specific behavior of one child, even it it is just a little better than the others.

Ignore the things that my kids are doing that drive me crazy.
95% of these things are just age typical behaviors. It’s part of the territory. Remember that behavior that does not get attention weakens and dies. When a behavior can’t be ignored, stop and redirect. Recognize misbehavior as a need to teach appropriate behavior.
You create the environment where your child can behave appropriately. Eliminate, as much as possible, the opportunities for a young child to “get into trouble”.
When it can’t be ignored, state simply, “That is not acceptable in our home.” Remove child to a place where they can’t interact with the family.
Use teaching time to cover “bugging” issues, swearing, etc. Don’t get upset about these things as they are happening. Let the child teach about an issue that is a concern for them.

Give positive attention to the appropriate behaviors I want to continue.
Remember that behavior that does not get attention weakens and dies. I don’t want appropriate behaviors to die.
*So often we spend all of our time correcting rather than engaging our kids positively. How do we feel when others approach us that way. How much do we want to be around them? On the other hand, how much do we long to be with those that love us despite our weaknesses, and constantly help us to see the good in ourselves?

Make it a point to have appropriate physical interaction with my kids.
Hugs are great.
*The world is so concerned with what is inappropriate, that we forget how positive and uplifting appropriate interaction is. Sometimes, a hug or an arm around your shoulders is all that you need to break down barriers and get to the heart of the problem.

Stay in Control.
When my kids misbehave I will not react in kind. I am not in control if I have lost my temper. An ounce of don’t say is worth a pound of I didn’t mean it. I will be proactive, not reactive.
Stay cool and calm: “That is an option, but not the one I’d want to choose.”

Let consequences (not treats) manage the behavior.
Clearly state the expectations, have child tell you what is expected, walk away. Follow through and be consistent.
*Make it easy on yourself. Please.

Remember that today is not forever.
I will not fear the worst.
*Do you remember what it was like to be a kid? Help them to see the good in themselves and recognize their own divine potential. Don’t let them fear the worst, either. Help them to understand repentance and their own need for the Savior. Help them to recognize that their life is longer than today and tomorrow, and that the mistakes of today don’t have to be carried forever.

Be of good cheer.
I will maintain a Christlike countenance.
Be a parent like Heavenly Father. The Spirit reinforces good & truth.
*Express your faith to your children. Be real with them, and allow them to see how much you need the Lord in your life to help you each day.
*Always make amends when you fail to maintain control. Allow them to recognize that you, too have expectations of yourself and your own behavior. There are consequences in your life as well for poor behavior. Hold yourself to the same rules that you expect them to live by.

Read the Scriptures.


1 comment:

EarlGirl said...

Great idea. How often are we just annoyed with the personalities our kids came with?