Annette Nay, PhD

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Parenting:
Knowing What to Do
When You Don't Know What to Do
By: Todd B. Corelli, Ph.D. & Richard L Bednar, Ph.D.
BYU Education Week 2001

Internalizing Self-Control

Self evaluative thoughts and feelings are what causes self-control. It encourages and reinforces good behavior by the child. This is better than trying to make them live under your control over them.

When a child is behaving inappropriately have the child explain to you, explicitly, his/her behavior. Do this without shamming, brow-beating, or threatening. In fact, be neutral in you calmness, voice control, and body demeanor.

Ask: "How do you feel about the way you behaved?"

If the child is not willing to describe the behavior then send him/her to his/her room forever until s/he is ready to talk to you. The child should only be allowed out for bathroom brakes, noting else, until s/he complies.

When the child is ready to talk, s/he will eventually admit that s/he was not proud of himself/herself. When the child admits this, then ask, "Is there a way of behaving that would make you feel better about yourself?"

  • Let the child tell you his/her options.
  • If s/he runs out of viable options, you may share some.
    Tell him/her that you hope that s/he will choose one of the appropriate options so they can feel good about himself/herself.
  • Always use praise when you see positive behavior. Ask how s/he feels about himself/herself.
  • We tend only to see the negative behavior. Remember to tell your children you are proud of their positive behaviors.

 


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