Almost every parent finds it challenging at times to discipline their child. Whether it is dealing with a screaming toddler or an angry teen, it can often be challenging to control your temper or find the right solution.
As a parent, teaching a child discipline can require time and patience. Discipline allows kids to resist unhealthy temptations, tolerate the discomfort needed to reach their long-term goals, and even accept delayed gratification.
From choosing to turn off the television to work on homework to resisting an extra cookie when Mom isn’t looking, discipline can be the key to helping kids become responsible adults. If you or your loved ones around you are facing challenges in connecting with your child or disciplining them, then know that you are not alone.
Online resources like BetterHelp provide access to highly trained and competent mental health professionals at the tip of your fingers to seek guidance and support. With some advice and professional help, parents of all sorts may be able to overcome challenges and improve relationships with their kids.
Positive discipline strategies effectively teach children to manage their behavior and keep them from harm while promoting healthy development.
7 Suggestions For Managing Child Discipline
1. Create a schedule for children.
Parents should prepare a daily schedule for the kids so that they get used to the routine. Knowing what they are supposed to do will make them less likely to get derailed by other activities or distractions.
For example, a good morning routine might include steps that help kids know when to eat breakfast, comb their hair, brush their teeth, and get dressed. A consistent bedtime routine will help kids settle down and fall asleep faster.
2. Explain the reason behind the rules.
During childhood, parents need to make crucial decisions for their children so that they can learn how to make healthy choices.
However, an essential caveat while making authoritative decisions is to explain the underlying reason for the rule. This will help the child to understand that rules serve a purpose.
Explaining why specific rules need to be followed will allow the child to better understand choices and decision-making.
For example, explaining that brushing teeth at night will help prevent cavities or tooth decay is better than simply telling them to brush their teeth at night.
3. Let them face the consequences of their actions.
Calmly and firmly explain the consequences of the child’s actions. Sometimes natural consequences can be one of the best lessons during a child’s formative years.
For example, instead of grabbing a packed lunch box for the child who constantly forgets to take it on his own, it may be advantageous to demonstrate the consequences of such actions (which might cause them to remember it from the next time onwards).
Logical consequences like no video games if the homework is not completed can also teach the child the power of discipline and making the right choices for a successful future.
4. Set limits and be role models.
Every child looks up to their parents for support and guidance. Children are blank canvases, and parents can fill them up with colors to lead a happy life.
Have clear and set boundaries or rules for behaving. Be firm on following through with the intended consequence for the particular action.
However, one needs to keep in mind that while establishing boundaries and consequences for the child, one should also strive to apply them in their own life. Teach children the difference between right and wrong through your own actions and calm words or behavior.
During formative years, modeling can be highly beneficial to the child since they tend to pick habits from adults only.
5. Pay attention to them.
Children constantly crave their parents’ love and attention. One of the simplest ways to do that is to hear them out.
By listening to their stories/problems, parents can help children feel heard and teach them to react more positively to advice or suggestions.
Watch for times where a particular behavior has become a pattern and only then intervene to help the child out.
6. Reward good behavior.
Children need to know the difference between good and bad behavior. Often, the best way to deal with bad behavior is to either ignore it (as long as it is not something dangerous) or thoughtfully punish it.
You could also redirect bad behavior into more productive channels. For example, physical violence could be redirected to sports like boxing or wrestling.
However, parents should focus on noticing good behavior and rewarding it with praises/compliments or gifts.
This will motivate the child to indulge in good behavior because of the benefit of positive reinforcement. They thrive on recognition since it makes them feel loved and special.
One should keep in mind that these rewards may not even be monetary. Rewards could include basic things like a sticker chart, increased video game time etc.
7. Plan one on one time with your children.
We often struggle to manage our daily tasks and responsibilities in our daily lives because of the paucity of time. However, it is important to take some time out during the day for someone to do one activity with your child.
This could include washing the dishes, playing a game or going for a walk. This time allows the parent and child to bond together, which strengthens the love and relationship.
Parents might find it easier to discipline a child who knows that their parents are looking out for their well-being or are close to their parents.
As a parent, you will likely always love your child and want the best for them. Throughout this journey, it is essential that one also sets clear boundaries for the child to make healthy and safe choices for a great future.
Positive discipline strategies allow the parent and child to bond while teaching the child the importance of being disciplined and making the right choices.