posted in Mom Stories
I’ve read several parenting books and a vast amount of articles on discipline in my six years of parenting. Many I need to print out and put up on my fridge, my bathroom mirror and leave around my house.
Because I forget. I learn a technique or trick that works for my kids and then POOF! I forget. Just like my children, I sometimes regress in my behavior.
An article came out last week from parenting coach, Sarina Behar Natkin, LICSW, that caused a light bulb to go off in my head. Natkin challenged parents to focus on the positive in their household for an entire week. This means no negative comments – to your children or your spouse. So what happens when your child does something you don’t like? You ignore it.
DING, DING, DING! There it was. That reminder. Earlier this year, I wrote an entire post on how difficult it is to ignore my children.
More often than not when my children are having a fit, I end up equally as upset. I’m fuming at this pint sized beast and acting exactly how I’m asking them not to act. Superb parenting skills I tell you.
But when I can remember to breathe and ignore the little turkeys, 9 times out of 10 the episode ends in a much quicker manner. Isn’t that what we all want? For the whining, crying and tantrums to stop?
Children crave our attention. They need it and most of the time we give it to them. But sometimes we need to withhold it so they can realize their actions aren’t appropriate.
Why can’t I ever remember that?
Natkin’s article encourages us to spend a week focusing on the positives and ignoring the need to call out negative behavior. I’m going to try it and report back to you guys on how I did. I feel like lately I’ve been on my son (who just turned six) like white on rice. He is really a good kid and I know it, but we’ve been bickering and yelling a lot more than I’d like. He’s a kid after all, of course he’s going to do things that annoy me.
Children, like grown-ups, don’t like to be micromanaged. They don’t like to feel controlled, and they don’t like to constantly be reminded of their shortcomings. When it happens regularly, they begin to feel like they can’t do anything right. That discouraged feeling is likely to lead to either defiance as our children try to maintain their dignity, or withdrawal and hopelessness as they see no reason to even try. This is not a good place to be as an adult or as a child.
So I’m going to take a deep breath and focus on all the positives in my household for the next week. It’s a crazy time of year and that’s even more of a reason to try this. I’m stressed and crazy, running around planning for Christmas, but that’s not a reason to get extra mad when my kids do something irritating.
Wish me luck people.
Could you go a week only focusing on the positive?
Discipline is tough. Here are some other ideas on how to handle your kid’s behavior.