Before dealing with the most common parent traps, there are a few things that must be done to create an environment conducive to positive discipline. Children are reactive to their parents. Therefore, you and your environment must be a positive model for your child.
First, reduce household stress and the sources of stress, such as work issues, financial concerns or marital problems. Second, take care of yourself. Eat well. Sleep enough. Take care of your mental well-being. Now, you are ready to tackle parenting traps.
Often, parents wrongly equate the term "discipline" with the term "punishment."
It is not necessary to be a well punished child in order to be a well disciplined child. A well disciplined child is one who follows the system of rules that govern conduct or behavior.
Parents need to understand that the gains from punishment are short term. The reliance on teaching a child what not to do is a critical mistake. Why?
How is discipline achieved?
All social behavior is governed by rules. You can use games as one way to teach children rules. In actuality, children want to know the "rules."
Rules work when they are:
Rules do not work when they are:
Also, it is important to remember that children learn by example. Well disciplined children have well disciplined parents who stand by and enforce their rules.
There are four things that parents must understand about behavior.
Why do children fail to change their behavior?
Why do children change their behavior?
Behavior is "selfish!" Children change their behavior because they have experienced the rewards associated with changing their behavior, and have experienced these rewards consistently over time.
The best technique for changing a child's behavior is often called "Grandma's rule." An example of this rule is "If you would like dessert, than you need to eat your lima beans. It's up to you."